Next Article in Journal
Impact of Coastal Infrastructure on Ocean Colour Remote Sensing: A Case Study in Jiaozhou Bay, China
Previous Article in Journal
Quantification and Analysis of Impervious Surface Area in the Metropolitan Region of São Paulo, Brazil
Previous Article in Special Issue
Beyond Site Detection: The Role of Satellite Remote Sensing in Analysing Archaeological Problems. A Case Study in Lithic Resource Procurement in the Atacama Desert, Northern Chile
Article Menu
Issue 8 (April-2) cover image

Export Article

Open AccessArticle

Relative Radiometric Calibration of Airborne LiDAR Data for Archaeological Applications

1
Department of Prehistoric & Historical Archaeology, University of Vienna, Franz-Klein-Gasse 1-III, 1190 Vienna, Austria
2
Department of Geodesey and Geoinformation, Research Unit Photogrammetry, Technische Universität Wien, Gusshausstrasse 27-29, 1040 Vienna, Austria
3
LBI for Archaeological Prospection and Virtual Archaeology, Hohe Warte 38, 1190 Vienna, Austria
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Remote Sens. 2019, 11(8), 945; https://doi.org/10.3390/rs11080945
Received: 19 March 2019 / Revised: 12 April 2019 / Accepted: 16 April 2019 / Published: 19 April 2019
  |  
PDF [31824 KB, uploaded 19 April 2019]
  |  

Abstract

Airborne laser scanning (ALS) data can provide more than just a topographic data set for archaeological research. During data collection, laser scanning systems also record radiometric information containing object properties, and thus information about archaeological features. Being aware of the physical model of ALS scanning, the radiometric information can be used to calculate material information of the scanned object. The reflectance of an object or material states the amount of energy it reflects for a specific electromagnetic wavelength. However, the collected radiometric data are affected by several factors that cause dissimilar values to be recorded for the same object. Radiometric calibration of such data minimizes these differences in calculated reflectance values of objects, improving their usability for feature detection and visualization purposes. Previous work dealing with calibration of radiometric data in archaeological research has relied on corresponding in-field measurements to acquire calibration values or has only corrected for a limited number of variables. In this paper, we apply a desk-based approach in which radiometric calibration is conducted through the selection of homogenous areas of interest, without the use of in-field measurements. Together with flight and scan parameters, radiometric calibration allows for the estimation of reflectance values for returns of a single full-waveform ALS data collection flight. The resulting data are then processed into a raster reflectance map that approximates a monochromatic illumination-independent true orthoimage at the wavelength of the laser scanner. We apply this approach to data collected for an archaeological research project in western Sicily and discuss the relative merits of the uses of radiometric data in such locations as well as its wider applicability for present and future archaeological and environmental research. In order to make the approach more accessible, we have developed a freely available tool that allows users to apply the calibration procedure to their own data. View Full-Text
Keywords: ALS; amplitude; radiometric calibration; reflectance; archaeology; Sicily ALS; amplitude; radiometric calibration; reflectance; archaeology; Sicily
Figures

Graphical abstract

This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited (CC BY 4.0).

Supplementary material

SciFeed

Share & Cite This Article

MDPI and ACS Style

Sevara, C.; Wieser, M.; Doneus, M.; Pfeifer, N. Relative Radiometric Calibration of Airborne LiDAR Data for Archaeological Applications. Remote Sens. 2019, 11, 945.

Show more citation formats Show less citations formats

Note that from the first issue of 2016, MDPI journals use article numbers instead of page numbers. See further details here.

Related Articles

Article Metrics

Article Access Statistics

1

Comments

[Return to top]
Remote Sens. EISSN 2072-4292 Published by MDPI AG, Basel, Switzerland RSS E-Mail Table of Contents Alert
Back to Top