Advances in remote sensing technologies have enabled effective drought monitoring globally, even in data-limited areas. However, the negative impact of drought on crop yields still necessitates stakeholders to make informed decisions according to its severity. This research proposes an algorithm to combine a drought monitoring model, based on rainfall, land surface temperature (LST), and normalized difference vegetation index/leaf area index (NDVI/LAI) satellite products, with a crop simulation model to assess drought impact on rice yields in Thailand. Typical crop simulation models can provide yield information, but the requirement for a complicated set of inputs prohibits their potential due to insufficient data. This work utilizes a rice crop simulation model called the Simulation Model for Use with Remote Sensing (SIMRIW–RS), whose inputs can mostly be satisfied by such satellite products. Based on experimental data collected during the 2018/19 crop seasons, this approach can successfully provide a drought monitoring function as well as effectively estimate the rice yield with mean absolute percentage error (MAPE) around 5%. In addition, we show that SIMRIW–RS can reasonably predict the rice yield when historical weather data is available. In effect, this research contributes a methodology to assess the drought impact on rice yields on a farm to regional scale, relevant to crop insurance and adaptation schemes to mitigate climate change.
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