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Remote Sens., Volume 6, Issue 8 (August 2014) , Pages 6727-7856

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Open AccessArticle
Comparative Estimation of Urban Development in China’s Cities Using Socioeconomic and DMSP/OLS Night Light Data
Remote Sens. 2014, 6(8), 7840-7856; https://doi.org/10.3390/rs6087840
Received: 24 June 2014 / Revised: 29 July 2014 / Accepted: 12 August 2014 / Published: 22 August 2014
Cited by 25 | Viewed by 3810 | PDF Full-text (5321 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
China has been undergoing a remarkably rapid urbanization process in the last several decades. Urbanization is a complicated phenomenon involving imbalanced transformation processes, such as population migrations, economic advancements and human activity dynamics. It is important to evaluate the imbalances between transformation processes [...] Read more.
China has been undergoing a remarkably rapid urbanization process in the last several decades. Urbanization is a complicated phenomenon involving imbalanced transformation processes, such as population migrations, economic advancements and human activity dynamics. It is important to evaluate the imbalances between transformation processes to support policy making in the realms of environmental management and urban planning. The Defense Meteorological Satellite Program’s Operational Linescan System (DMSP/OLS) nighttime lights time series imagery provides a consistent and timely measure to estimate socioeconomic dynamics and changes in human activity. In this study, we jointly compared the annual ranks of three variables: the population, the gross domestic product (GDP) and the sum of weighted DMSP/OLS nighttime lights to estimate spatial and temporal imbalances in the urbanization processes of 226 cities in China between 1994 and 2011. We used ternary plots and a Euclidean distance-based method to quantitatively estimate the spatial and temporal imbalances between cities and to classify diverse urban development patterns in China. Our results suggest that, from 1994 to 2011, the imbalances of urbanization processes observed in the eastern, western and middle cities decreased, respectively, by 35.26%, 29.04% and 25.84%; however, imbalances in the northeast increased by 33.29%. The average decrement in imbalances across all urbanization processes in the 226 cities was 17.58%. Cities in the eastern region displayed relatively strong attractions to population, more rapid economic development processes and lower imbalances between socioeconomic and anthropogenic dynamics than cities in other regions. Several types of urban development patterns can be identified by comparing the morphological characteristics of temporal ternary plots of the 226 cities in China. More than one third (35.40%) of the 226 cities presented balanced states during the period studied; however, the remainder showed alternative urban development patterns. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Remote Sensing with Nighttime Lights)
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Open AccessArticle
Enabling the Use of Earth Observation Data for Integrated Water Resource Management in Africa with the Water Observation and Information System
Remote Sens. 2014, 6(8), 7819-7839; https://doi.org/10.3390/rs6087819
Received: 28 March 2014 / Revised: 13 August 2014 / Accepted: 14 August 2014 / Published: 21 August 2014
Cited by 12 | Viewed by 5023 | PDF Full-text (4933 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
The Water Observation and Information System (WOIS) is an open source software tool for monitoring, assessing and inventorying water resources in a cost-effective manner using Earth Observation (EO) data. The WOIS has been developed by, among others, the authors of this paper under [...] Read more.
The Water Observation and Information System (WOIS) is an open source software tool for monitoring, assessing and inventorying water resources in a cost-effective manner using Earth Observation (EO) data. The WOIS has been developed by, among others, the authors of this paper under the TIGER-NET project, which is a major component of the TIGER initiative of the European Space Agency (ESA) and whose main goal is to support the African Earth Observation Capacity for Water Resource Monitoring. TIGER-NET aims to support the satellite-based assessment and monitoring of water resources from watershed to cross-border basin levels through the provision of a free and powerful software package, with associated capacity building, to African authorities. More than 28 EO data processing solutions for water resource management tasks have been developed, in correspondence with the requirements of the participating key African water authorities, and demonstrated with dedicated case studies utilizing the software in operational scenarios. They cover a wide range of themes and information products, including basin-wide characterization of land and water resources, lake water quality monitoring, hydrological modeling and flood forecasting and mapping. For each monitoring task, step-by-step workflows were developed, which can either be adjusted by the user or largely automatized to feed into existing data streams and reporting schemes. The WOIS enables African water authorities to fully exploit the increasing EO capacity offered by current and upcoming generations of satellites, including the Sentinel missions. Full article
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Open AccessLetter
Successful Applications of Geotechnologies for the Evaluation of Road Infrastructures
Remote Sens. 2014, 6(8), 7800-7818; https://doi.org/10.3390/rs6087800
Received: 1 July 2014 / Revised: 4 August 2014 / Accepted: 7 August 2014 / Published: 21 August 2014
Cited by 6 | Viewed by 2373 | PDF Full-text (7904 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
This work reports the results obtained over several years of research into the application of different geomatic techniques in the field of civil engineering and, in particular, in their application to the management of road systems and associated structures. Among the main advances [...] Read more.
This work reports the results obtained over several years of research into the application of different geomatic techniques in the field of civil engineering and, in particular, in their application to the management of road systems and associated structures. Among the main advances obtained are the quantification of parameters during the inventorying and inspection of infrastructures, the metric quality of the results and the development of hardware and software tools for the automation of road systems management. Full article
Open AccessArticle
Salt Content Distribution and Paleoclimatic Significance of the Lop Nur “Ear” Feature: Results from Analysis of EO-1 Hyperion Imagery
Remote Sens. 2014, 6(8), 7783-7799; https://doi.org/10.3390/rs6087783
Received: 12 June 2014 / Revised: 14 August 2014 / Accepted: 14 August 2014 / Published: 21 August 2014
Cited by 4 | Viewed by 2351 | PDF Full-text (5171 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Lop Nur, a playa lake located on the eastern margin of Tarim Basin in northwestern China, is famous for the “Ear” feature of its salt crust, which appears in remote-sensing images. In this study, partial least squares (PLS) regression was used to estimated [...] Read more.
Lop Nur, a playa lake located on the eastern margin of Tarim Basin in northwestern China, is famous for the “Ear” feature of its salt crust, which appears in remote-sensing images. In this study, partial least squares (PLS) regression was used to estimated Lop Nur playa salt-crust properties, including total salt, Ca2+, Mg2+, Na+, Si2+, and Fe2+ using laboratory hyperspectral data. PLS results for laboratory-measured spectra were compared with those for resampled laboratory spectra with the same spectral resolution as Hyperion using the coefficient of determination (R2) and the ratio of standard deviation of sample chemical concentration to root mean squared error (RPD). Based on R2 and RPD, the results suggest that PLS can predict Ca2+ using Hyperion reflectance spectra. The Ca2+ distribution was compared to the “Ear area” shown in a Landsat Thematic Mapper (TM) 5 image. The mean value of reflectance from visible bands for a 14 km transversal profile to the “Ear area” rings was extracted with the TM 5 image. The reflectance was used to build a correlation with Ca2+ content estimated with PLS using Hyperion. Results show that the correlation between Ca2+ content and reflectance is in accordance with the evolution of the salt lake. Ca2+ content variation was consistent with salt deposition. Some areas show a negative correlation between Ca2+ content and reflectance, indicating that there could have been a small-scale temporary runoff event under an arid environmental background. Further work is needed to determine whether these areas of small-scale runoff are due to natural (climate events) or human factors (upstream channel changes). Full article
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Open AccessArticle
Evaluating MERIS-Based Aquatic Vegetation Mapping in Lake Victoria
Remote Sens. 2014, 6(8), 7762-7782; https://doi.org/10.3390/rs6087762
Received: 14 February 2014 / Revised: 4 August 2014 / Accepted: 5 August 2014 / Published: 20 August 2014
Cited by 8 | Viewed by 2980 | PDF Full-text (2949 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Delineation of aquatic plants and estimation of its surface extent are crucial to the efficient control of its proliferation, and this information can be derived accurately with fine resolution remote sensing products. However, small swath and low observation frequency associated with them may [...] Read more.
Delineation of aquatic plants and estimation of its surface extent are crucial to the efficient control of its proliferation, and this information can be derived accurately with fine resolution remote sensing products. However, small swath and low observation frequency associated with them may be prohibitive for application to large water bodies with rapid proliferation and dynamic floating aquatic plants. The information can be derived from products with large swath and high observation frequency, but with coarse resolution; and the quality of so derived information must be eventually assessed using finer resolution data. In this study, we evaluate two methods: Normalized Difference Vegetation Index (NDVI) slicing and maximum likelihood in terms of delineation; and two methods: Gutman and Ignatov’s NDVI-based fractional cover retrieval and linear spectral unmixing in terms of area estimation of aquatic plants from 300 m Medium Resolution Imaging Spectrometer (MERIS) data, using as reference results obtained with 30 m Landsat-7 ETM+. Our results show for delineation, that maximum likelihood with an average classification accuracy of 80% is better than NDVI slicing at 75%, both methods showing larger errors over sparse vegetation. In area estimation, we found that Gutman and Ignatov’s method and spectral unmixing produce almost the same root mean square (RMS) error of about 0.10, but the former shows larger errors of about 0.15 over sparse vegetation while the latter remains invariant. Where an endmember spectral library is available, we recommend the spectral unmixing approach to estimate extent of vegetation with coarse resolution data, as its performance is relatively invariant to the fragmentation of aquatic vegetation cover. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
Classification of Grassland Successional Stages Using Airborne Hyperspectral Imagery
Remote Sens. 2014, 6(8), 7732-7761; https://doi.org/10.3390/rs6087732
Received: 8 April 2014 / Revised: 30 July 2014 / Accepted: 30 July 2014 / Published: 20 August 2014
Cited by 17 | Viewed by 4195 | PDF Full-text (5355 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Plant communities differ in their species composition, and, thus, also in their functional trait composition, at different stages in the succession from arable fields to grazed grassland. We examine whether aerial hyperspectral (414–2501 nm) remote sensing can be used to discriminate between grazed [...] Read more.
Plant communities differ in their species composition, and, thus, also in their functional trait composition, at different stages in the succession from arable fields to grazed grassland. We examine whether aerial hyperspectral (414–2501 nm) remote sensing can be used to discriminate between grazed vegetation belonging to different grassland successional stages. Vascular plant species were recorded in 104.1 m2 plots on the island of Öland (Sweden) and the functional properties of the plant species recorded in the plots were characterized in terms of the ground-cover of grasses, specific leaf area and Ellenberg indicator values. Plots were assigned to three different grassland age-classes, representing 5–15, 16–50 and >50 years of grazing management. Partial least squares discriminant analysis models were used to compare classifications based on aerial hyperspectral data with the age-class classification. The remote sensing data successfully classified the plots into age-classes: the overall classification accuracy was higher for a model based on a pre-selected set of wavebands (85%, Kappa statistic value = 0.77) than one using the full set of wavebands (77%, Kappa statistic value = 0.65). Our results show that nutrient availability and grass cover differences between grassland age-classes are detectable by spectral imaging. These techniques may potentially be used for mapping the spatial distribution of grassland habitats at different successional stages. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Earth Observation for Ecosystems Monitoring in Space and Time)
Open AccessArticle
Characterizing Spatio-Temporal Dynamics of Urbanization in China Using Time Series of DMSP/OLS Night Light Data
Remote Sens. 2014, 6(8), 7708-7731; https://doi.org/10.3390/rs6087708
Received: 24 June 2014 / Revised: 21 July 2014 / Accepted: 12 August 2014 / Published: 20 August 2014
Cited by 21 | Viewed by 3169 | PDF Full-text (10606 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Stable nighttime light (NTL) data, derived from the Defense Meteorological Satellite Program’s Operational Linescan System (DMSP/OLS), are typically considered a proxy measure of the dynamics of human settlements and have been extensively used to quantitative estimates of demographic variables, economic activity, and land-use [...] Read more.
Stable nighttime light (NTL) data, derived from the Defense Meteorological Satellite Program’s Operational Linescan System (DMSP/OLS), are typically considered a proxy measure of the dynamics of human settlements and have been extensively used to quantitative estimates of demographic variables, economic activity, and land-use change in previous studies at both regional and global scales. The utility of DMSP data for characterizing spatio-temporal trends in urban development at a local scale, however, has received less attention. In this study, we utilize a time series of DMSP data to examine the spatio-temporal characteristics of urban development in 285 Chinese cities from 1992 to 2009, at both the local and national levels. We compare linear models and piecewise linear models to identify the turning points of nighttime lights and calculate the trends in nighttime light growth at the pixel level. An unsupervised classification is applied to identify the patterns in the nighttime light time series quantitatively. Our results indicate that nighttime light brightness in most areas of China exhibit a positive, multi-stage process over the last two decades; however, the average trends in nighttime light growth differ significantly. Through the piecewise linear model, we identify the saturation of nighttime light brightness in the urban center and significant increases in suburban areas. The maps of turning points indicate the greater the distance to the city center or sub-center, the later the turning point occurs. Six patterns derived from the classification illustrate the various characteristics of the nighttime light time series from the local to the national level. The results portray spatially explicit patterns and conspicuous temporal trends of urbanization dynamics for individual Chinese cities from 1992 to 2009. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Remote Sensing with Nighttime Lights)
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Open AccessArticle
Seven Years of Advanced Synthetic Aperture Radar (ASAR) Global Monitoring (GM) of Surface Soil Moisture over Africa
Remote Sens. 2014, 6(8), 7683-7707; https://doi.org/10.3390/rs6087683
Received: 14 May 2014 / Revised: 8 August 2014 / Accepted: 11 August 2014 / Published: 19 August 2014
Cited by 12 | Viewed by 2970 | PDF Full-text (11268 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
A surface soil moisture (SSM) product at a 1-km spatial resolution derived from the Envisat Advanced Synthetic Aperture Radar (ASAR) Global Monitoring (GM) mode data was evaluated over the entire African continent using coarse spatial resolution SSM acquisitions from the Advanced Microwave Scanning [...] Read more.
A surface soil moisture (SSM) product at a 1-km spatial resolution derived from the Envisat Advanced Synthetic Aperture Radar (ASAR) Global Monitoring (GM) mode data was evaluated over the entire African continent using coarse spatial resolution SSM acquisitions from the Advanced Microwave Scanning Radiometer for Earth Observing System (AMSR-E) and the Noah land surface model from the Global Land Data Assimilation System (GLDAS-NOAH). The evaluation was performed in terms of relative soil moisture values (%), as well as anomalies from the seasonal cycle. Considering the high radiometric noise of the ASAR GM data, the SSM product exhibits a good ability (Pearson correlation coefficient (R) = ~0.6 for relative soil moisture values and root mean square difference (RMSD) = 11% when averaged to 5-km resolution) to monitor temporal soil moisture variability in regions with low to medium density vegetation and yearly rainfall >250 mm. The findings agree with previous evaluation studies performed over Australia and further strengthen the understanding of the quality of the ASAR GM SSM product and its potential for data assimilation. Problems identified in the ASAR GM algorithm over arid regions were explained by azimuthal effects. Diverse backscatter behavior over different soil types was identified. The insights gained about the quality of the data were used to establish a reliable masking of the existing ASAR GM SSM product and the identification of areas where further research is needed for the future Sentinel-1-derived SSM products. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
Evaluation of the Surface Water Distribution in North-Central Namibia Based on MODIS and AMSR Series
Remote Sens. 2014, 6(8), 7660-7682; https://doi.org/10.3390/rs6087660
Received: 31 March 2014 / Revised: 5 August 2014 / Accepted: 6 August 2014 / Published: 19 August 2014
Cited by 10 | Viewed by 3349 | PDF Full-text (6646 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Semi-arid North-central Namibia has high potential for rice cultivation because large seasonal wetlands (oshana) form during the rainy season. Evaluating the distribution of surface water would reveal the area potentially suitable for rice cultivation. In this study, we detected the distribution [...] Read more.
Semi-arid North-central Namibia has high potential for rice cultivation because large seasonal wetlands (oshana) form during the rainy season. Evaluating the distribution of surface water would reveal the area potentially suitable for rice cultivation. In this study, we detected the distribution of surface water with high spatial and temporal resolution by using two types of complementary satellite data: MODIS (MODerate-resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer) and AMSR-E (Advanced Microwave Scanning Radiometer–Earth Observing System), using AMSR2 after AMSR-E became unavailable. We combined the modified normalized-difference water index (MNDWI) from the MODIS data with the normalized-difference polarization index (NDPI) from the AMSR-E and AMSR2 data to determine the area of surface water. We developed a simple gap-filling method (“database unmixing”) with the two indices, thereby providing daily 500-m-resolution MNDWI maps of north-central Namibia regardless of whether the sky was clear. Moreover, through receiver-operator characteristics (ROC) analysis, we determined the threshold MNDWI (−0.316) for wetlands. Using ROC analysis, MNDWI had moderate performance (the area under the ROC curve was 0.747), and the recognition error for seasonal wetlands and dry land was 21.2%. The threshold MNDWI let us calculate probability of water presence (PWP) maps for the rainy season and the whole year. The PWP maps revealed the total area potentially suitable for rice cultivation: 1255 km2 (1.6% of the study area). Full article
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Open AccessArticle
Development of a Novel Bidirectional Canopy Reflectance Model for Row-Planted Rice and Wheat
Remote Sens. 2014, 6(8), 7632-7659; https://doi.org/10.3390/rs6087632
Received: 16 April 2014 / Revised: 24 July 2014 / Accepted: 25 July 2014 / Published: 19 August 2014
Cited by 7 | Viewed by 2549 | PDF Full-text (1032 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Rice and wheat are mainly planted in a row structure in China. Radiative transfer models have the potential to provide an accurate description of the bidirectional reflectance characteristics of the canopies of row-planted crops, but few of them have addressed the problem of [...] Read more.
Rice and wheat are mainly planted in a row structure in China. Radiative transfer models have the potential to provide an accurate description of the bidirectional reflectance characteristics of the canopies of row-planted crops, but few of them have addressed the problem of row-planted structures. In this paper, a new 4SAIL-RowCrop model for row-planted rice and wheat canopies was developed by integrating the 4SAIL model and the Kimes geometric model. The Kimes model and the Kimes–Porous geometric optics (GO) module were used to simulate different scene component proportions. Spectral reflectance and transmittance were subsequently calculated using the 4SAIL model to determine the reflectance of crucial scene components: the illuminated canopy, illuminated background and shadowed background. The model was validated by measuring the reflectance of rice and wheat cultivars at different growth stages, planting densities and nitrogen fertilization rates. The directional and nadir reflectance simulated by the model agreed well with experimental data, with squared correlation coefficients of 0.69 and 0.98, root mean square errors of 0.013 and 0.009 and normalized root mean square errors of 15.8% and 12.4%, respectively. The results indicate that the 4SAIL-RowCrop model is suitable for simulating the spectral reflectance of the canopy of row-planted rice and wheat. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
The Potential of Time Series Merged from Landsat-5 TM and HJ-1 CCD for Crop Classification: A Case Study for Bole and Manas Counties in Xinjiang, China
Remote Sens. 2014, 6(8), 7610-7631; https://doi.org/10.3390/rs6087610
Received: 2 January 2014 / Revised: 4 August 2014 / Accepted: 5 August 2014 / Published: 19 August 2014
Cited by 22 | Viewed by 2551 | PDF Full-text (10777 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Time series data capture crop growth dynamics and are some of the most effective data sources for crop mapping. However, a drawback of precise crop classification at medium resolution (30 m) using multi-temporal data is that some images at crucial time periods are [...] Read more.
Time series data capture crop growth dynamics and are some of the most effective data sources for crop mapping. However, a drawback of precise crop classification at medium resolution (30 m) using multi-temporal data is that some images at crucial time periods are absent from a single sensor. In this research, a medium-resolution, 15-day time series was obtained by merging Landsat-5 TM and HJ-1 CCD data (with similar radiometric performances in multi-spectral bands). Subsequently, optimal temporal windows for accurate crop mapping were evaluated using an extension of the Jeffries–Matusita (JM) distance from the merged time series. A support vector machine (SVM) was then used to compare the classification accuracy of the optimal temporal windows and the entire time series. In addition, different training sample sizes (10% to 90% of the entire training sample in 10% increments; five repetitions for each sample size) were used to investigate the stability of optimal temporal windows. The results showed that time series in optimal temporal windows can achieve high classification accuracies. The optimal temporal windows were robust when the training sample size was sufficiently large. However, they were not stable when the sample size was too small (i.e., less than 300) and may shift in different agro-ecosystems, because of different classes. In addition, merged time series had higher temporal resolution and were more likely to comprise the optimal temporal periods than time series from single-sensor data. Therefore, the use of merged time series increased the possibility of precise crop classification. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
Sub-Compartment Variation in Tree Height, Stem Diameter and Stocking in a Pinus radiata D. Don Plantation Examined Using Airborne LiDAR Data
Remote Sens. 2014, 6(8), 7592-7609; https://doi.org/10.3390/rs6087592
Received: 15 April 2014 / Revised: 28 July 2014 / Accepted: 28 July 2014 / Published: 15 August 2014
Cited by 10 | Viewed by 2646 | PDF Full-text (2870 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Better information regarding the spatial variability of height, Diameter at Breast Height (DBH) and stocking could improve inventory estimates at the operational Planning Unit since these parameters are used extensively in allometric equations, including stem volume, biomass and carbon calculations. In this study, [...] Read more.
Better information regarding the spatial variability of height, Diameter at Breast Height (DBH) and stocking could improve inventory estimates at the operational Planning Unit since these parameters are used extensively in allometric equations, including stem volume, biomass and carbon calculations. In this study, the influence of stand stocking on height and DBH of two even aged radiata pine (Pinus radiata D. Don) stands were investigated using airborne Light Detection and Ranging (LiDAR) data at a study site in New South Wales, Australia. Both stands were characterized by irregular stocking due to patchy establishment and self-thinning in the absence of any silvicultural thinning events. For the purpose of this study, a total of 34 plots from a 34 year old site and 43 plots from a nine year old site were established, from which a total of 447 trees were sampled. Within these plots, DBH and height measurements were measured and their relationships with stocking were evaluated. LiDAR was used for height estimation as well as stem counts in fixed plots (stocking). The results showed a significant relationship between stem DBH and stocking. At both locations, trees with larger diameters were found on lower stocking sites. Height values were also significantly correlated with stocking, with taller trees associated with high stocking. These results were further verified of additional tree samples, with independent field surveys for DBH and LiDAR-derived metrics for height analysis. This study confirmed the relationship between P. radiata tree heights and stem diameter with stocking and demonstrated the capacity of LiDAR to capture sub-compartment variation in these tree-level attributes. Full article
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Open AccessTechnical Note
Improvements in Sample Selection Methods for Image Classification
Remote Sens. 2014, 6(8), 7580-7591; https://doi.org/10.3390/rs6087580
Received: 2 April 2014 / Revised: 7 August 2014 / Accepted: 8 August 2014 / Published: 15 August 2014
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 2557 | PDF Full-text (1715 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Traditional image classification algorithms are mainly divided into unsupervised and supervised paradigms. In the first paradigm, algorithms are designed to automatically estimate the classes’ distributions in the feature space. The second paradigm depends on the knowledge of a domain expert to identify representative [...] Read more.
Traditional image classification algorithms are mainly divided into unsupervised and supervised paradigms. In the first paradigm, algorithms are designed to automatically estimate the classes’ distributions in the feature space. The second paradigm depends on the knowledge of a domain expert to identify representative examples from the image to be used for estimating the classification model. Recent improvements in human-computer interaction (HCI) enable the construction of more intuitive graphic user interfaces (GUIs) to help users obtain desired results. In remote sensing image classification, GUIs still need advancements. In this work, we describe our efforts to develop an improved GUI for selecting the representative samples needed to estimate the classification model. The idea is to identify changes in the common strategies for sample selection to create a user-driven sample selection, which focuses on different views of each sample, and to help domain experts identify explicit classification rules, which is a well-established technique in geographic object-based image analysis (GEOBIA). We also propose the use of the well-known nearest neighbor algorithm to identify similar samples and accelerate the classification. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
Industrial Wastewater Discharge Retrieval Based on Stable Nighttime Light Imagery in China from 1992 to 2010
Remote Sens. 2014, 6(8), 7566-7579; https://doi.org/10.3390/rs6087566
Received: 14 May 2014 / Revised: 8 August 2014 / Accepted: 11 August 2014 / Published: 14 August 2014
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Abstract
Industrial wastewater (IW) discharge, which is a known point source of pollution, is a major water pollution source. Increasing IW discharge has imposed considerable pressure on regional or global water environments. It is important to estimate the IW distribution in grid units to [...] Read more.
Industrial wastewater (IW) discharge, which is a known point source of pollution, is a major water pollution source. Increasing IW discharge has imposed considerable pressure on regional or global water environments. It is important to estimate the IW distribution in grid units to improve basin-scale hydrological processes and water quality modeling. For the first time, we use the nighttime light imagery produced by the Defense Meteorological Satellite Program’s Operational Linescan System (DMSP/OLS) to estimate the spatial and temporal variations in the IW distribution from 1992 to 2010 in China. The digital number values per unit area (DNP) of each stable light image were calculated using nighttime light imagery and were regressed against the IW per unit area (IWP) to estimate the total industrial wastewater (TIW) for each province. The results indicated strong positive correlations between the DNP and the IWP for each province during different years. The fitted linear regression models were used to estimate IW discharge in China with reliable accuracy. The IW estimation using the satellite data was consistent with the statistical results. The results also revealed that the IW discharge coverage expanded, whereas the IW discharge intensity decreased from 1992 to 2010 in China. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Remote Sensing with Nighttime Lights)
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Open AccessArticle
On Recovering Missing Ground Penetrating Radar Traces by Statistical Interpolation Methods
Remote Sens. 2014, 6(8), 7546-7565; https://doi.org/10.3390/rs6087546
Received: 4 May 2014 / Revised: 7 August 2014 / Accepted: 8 August 2014 / Published: 14 August 2014
Cited by 12 | Viewed by 2593 | PDF Full-text (2858 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Missing traces in ground penetrating radar (GPR) B-scans (radargrams) may appear because of limited scanning resolution, failures during the acquisition process or the lack of accessibility to some areas under test. Four statistical interpolation methods for recovering these missing traces are compared in [...] Read more.
Missing traces in ground penetrating radar (GPR) B-scans (radargrams) may appear because of limited scanning resolution, failures during the acquisition process or the lack of accessibility to some areas under test. Four statistical interpolation methods for recovering these missing traces are compared in this paper: Kriging, Wiener structures, Splines and the expectation assuming an independent component analyzers mixture model (E-ICAMM). Kriging is an adaptation to the spatial context of the linear least mean squared error estimator. Wiener structures improve the linear estimator by including a nonlinear scalar function. Splines are a commonly used method to interpolate GPR traces. This consists of piecewise-defined polynomial curves that are smooth at the connections (or knots) between pieces. E-ICAMM is a new method proposed in this paper. E-ICAMM consists of computing the optimum nonlinear estimator (the conditional mean) assuming a non-Gaussian mixture model for the joint probability density in the observation space. The proposed methods were tested on a set of simulated data and a set of real data, and four performance indicators were computed. Real data were obtained by GPR inspection of two replicas of historical walls. Results show the superiority of E-ICAMM in comparison with the other three methods in the application of reconstructing incomplete B-scans. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Close-Range Remote Sensing by Ground Penetrating Radar)
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Open AccessArticle
Estimation of Reservoir Discharges from Lake Nasser and Roseires Reservoir in the Nile Basin Using Satellite Altimetry and Imagery Data
Remote Sens. 2014, 6(8), 7522-7545; https://doi.org/10.3390/rs6087522
Received: 31 March 2014 / Revised: 28 July 2014 / Accepted: 7 August 2014 / Published: 13 August 2014
Cited by 22 | Viewed by 4035 | PDF Full-text (2420 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
This paper presents the feasibility of estimating discharges from Roseires Reservoir (Sudan) for the period from 2002 to 2010 and Aswan High Dam/Lake Nasser (Egypt) for the periods 1999–2002 and 2005–2009 using satellite altimetry and imagery with limited in situ data. Discharges were [...] Read more.
This paper presents the feasibility of estimating discharges from Roseires Reservoir (Sudan) for the period from 2002 to 2010 and Aswan High Dam/Lake Nasser (Egypt) for the periods 1999–2002 and 2005–2009 using satellite altimetry and imagery with limited in situ data. Discharges were computed using the water balance of the reservoirs. Rainfall and evaporation data were obtained from public domain data sources. In situ measurements of inflow and outflow (for validation) were obtained, as well. The other water balance components, such as the water level and surface area, for derivation of the change of storage volume were derived from satellite measurements. Water levels were obtained from Hydroweb for Roseires Reservoir and Hydroweb and Global Reservoir and Lake Monitor (GRLM) for Lake Nasser. Water surface areas were derived from Landsat TM/ETM+ images using the Normalized Difference Water Index (NDWI). The water volume variations were estimated by integrating the area-level relationship of each reservoir. For Roseires Reservoir, the water levels from Hydroweb agreed well with in situ water levels (RMSE = 0.92 m; R2 = 0.96). Good agreement with in situ measurements were also obtained for estimated water volume (RMSE = 23%; R2 = 0.94) and computed discharge (RMSE = 18%; R2 = 0.98). The accuracy of the computed discharge was considered acceptable for typical reservoir operation applications. For Lake Nasser, the altimetry water levels also agreed well with in situ levels, both for Hydroweb (RMSE = 0.72 m; R2 = 0.81) and GRLM (RMSE = 0.62 m; R2 = 0.96) data. Similar agreements were also observed for the estimated water volumes (RMSE = 10%–15%). However, the estimated discharge from satellite data agreed poorly with observed discharge, Hydroweb (RMSE = 70%; R2 = 0.09) and GRLM (RMSE = 139%; R2 = 0.36). The error could be attributed to the high sensitivity of discharge to errors in storage volume because of the immense reservoir compared to inflow/outflow series. It may also be related to unaccounted spills into the Toshka Depression, overestimation of water inflow and errors in open water evaporation. Therefore, altimetry water levels and satellite imagery data can be used as a source of information for monitoring the operation of Roseires Reservoir with a fairly low uncertainty, while the errors of Lake Nasser are too large to allow for the monitoring of its operation. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
Blind Restoration of Remote Sensing Images by a Combination of Automatic Knife-Edge Detection and Alternating Minimization
Remote Sens. 2014, 6(8), 7491-7521; https://doi.org/10.3390/rs6087491
Received: 27 April 2014 / Revised: 24 July 2014 / Accepted: 5 August 2014 / Published: 13 August 2014
Cited by 9 | Viewed by 2821 | PDF Full-text (4364 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
In this paper, a blind restoration method is presented to remove the blur in remote sensing images. An alternating minimization (AM) framework is employed to simultaneously recover the image and the point spread function (PSF), and an adaptive-norm prior is used to apply [...] Read more.
In this paper, a blind restoration method is presented to remove the blur in remote sensing images. An alternating minimization (AM) framework is employed to simultaneously recover the image and the point spread function (PSF), and an adaptive-norm prior is used to apply different constraints to smooth regions and edges. Moreover, with the use of the knife-edge features in remote sensing images, an automatic knife-edge detection method is used to obtain a good initial PSF for the AM framework. In addition, a no-reference (NR) sharpness index is used to stop the iterations of the AM framework automatically at the best visual quality. Results in both simulated and real data experiments indicate that the proposed AM-KEdge method, which combines the automatic knife-edge detection and the AM framework, is robust, converges quickly, and can stop automatically to obtain satisfactory results. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
Soil Surface Sealing Effect on Soil Moisture at a Semiarid Hillslope: Implications for Remote Sensing Estimation
Remote Sens. 2014, 6(8), 7469-7490; https://doi.org/10.3390/rs6087469
Received: 16 April 2014 / Revised: 17 July 2014 / Accepted: 18 July 2014 / Published: 13 August 2014
Cited by 6 | Viewed by 2612 | PDF Full-text (3281 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Robust estimation of soil moisture using microwave remote sensing depends on extensive ground sampling for calibration and validation of the data. Soil surface sealing is a frequent phenomenon in dry environments. It modulates soil moisture close to the soil surface and, thus, has [...] Read more.
Robust estimation of soil moisture using microwave remote sensing depends on extensive ground sampling for calibration and validation of the data. Soil surface sealing is a frequent phenomenon in dry environments. It modulates soil moisture close to the soil surface and, thus, has the potential to affect the retrieval of soil moisture from microwave remote sensing and the validation of these data based on ground observations. We addressed this issue using a physically-based modeling approach that accounts explicitly for surface sealing at the hillslope scale. Simulated mean soil moisture at the respective layers corresponding to both the ground validation probe and the radar beam’s typical effective penetration depth were considered. A cyclic pattern was found in which, as compared to an unsealed profile, the seal layer intensifies the bias in validation during rainfall events and substantially reduces it during subsequent drying periods. The analysis of this cyclic pattern showed that, accounting for soil moisture dynamics at the soil surface, the optimal time for soil sampling following a rainfall event is a few hours in the case of an unsealed system and a few days in the case of a sealed one. Surface sealing was found to increase the temporal stability of soil moisture. In both sealed and unsealed systems, the greatest temporal stability was observed at positions with moderate slope inclination. Soil porosity was the best predictor of soil moisture temporal stability, indicating that prior knowledge regarding the soil texture distribution is crucial for the application of remote sensing validation schemes. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Remote Sensing of Land Degradation in Drylands)
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Open AccessEditorial
Remote Sensing Open Access Journal: Increasing Impact through Quality Publications
Remote Sens. 2014, 6(8), 7463-7468; https://doi.org/10.3390/rs6087463
Received: 10 June 2014 / Revised: 4 August 2014 / Accepted: 10 August 2014 / Published: 12 August 2014
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 2642 | PDF Full-text (828 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Remote Sensing, an open access journal (https://www.mdpi.com/journal/remotesensing) has grown at rapid pace since its first publication five years ago, and has acquired a strong reputation. It is a “pathfinder” being the first open access journal in remote sensing. For those academics who [...] Read more.
Remote Sensing, an open access journal (https://www.mdpi.com/journal/remotesensing) has grown at rapid pace since its first publication five years ago, and has acquired a strong reputation. It is a “pathfinder” being the first open access journal in remote sensing. For those academics who were used to waiting a year or two for their peer-reviewed scientific work to be reviewed, revised, edited, and published, Remote Sensing offers a publication time frame that is unheard of (in most cases, less than four months). However, we do this after multiple peer-reviews, multiple revisions, much editorial scrutiny and decision-making, and professional editing by an editorial office before a paper is published online in our tight time frame, bringing a paradigm shift in scientific publication. As a result, there has been a swift increase in submissions of higher and higher quality manuscripts from the best authors and institutes working on Remote Sensing, Geographic Information Systems (GIS), Global Navigation Satellite System (GNSS), GIScience, and all related geospatial science and technologies from around the world. The purpose of this editorial is to update everyone interested in Remote Sensing on the progress made over the last year, and provide an outline of our vision for the immediate future. [...] Full article
Open AccessArticle
A New Method for Modifying Thresholds in the Classification of Tree Models for Mapping Aquatic Vegetation in Taihu Lake with Satellite Images
Remote Sens. 2014, 6(8), 7442-7462; https://doi.org/10.3390/rs6087442
Received: 17 March 2014 / Revised: 24 July 2014 / Accepted: 25 July 2014 / Published: 12 August 2014
Cited by 15 | Viewed by 3234 | PDF Full-text (3561 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Aquatic vegetation plays an important role in maintaining the balance of lake ecosystems. Thus, classifying and mapping aquatic vegetation is a priority for lake management. Classification tree (CT) approaches have been used successfully to map aquatic vegetation from spectral indices obtained from remotely [...] Read more.
Aquatic vegetation plays an important role in maintaining the balance of lake ecosystems. Thus, classifying and mapping aquatic vegetation is a priority for lake management. Classification tree (CT) approaches have been used successfully to map aquatic vegetation from spectral indices obtained from remotely sensed images. However, due to the effects of extrinsic and intrinsic factors, applying a CT model developed for imagery from one date to imagery from another date or a different dataset likely would reduce the classification accuracy. In this study, three spectral features (SFs) were selected to develop a CT model for identifying aquatic vegetation in Taihu Lake. Three traditional CT models with three SFs were developed using CT analysis based on satellite images acquired on 11 July, 16 August and 26 September 2013, and corresponding ground-truth samples, from the Huangjing-1A/B Charge-Coupled Device (HJ-CCD) images, environment and disaster reduction small satellites that were launched by China Center for Resources Satellite Data and Application (CRESDA). The overall accuracies of traditional CT models were 82%, 80% and 84%. We then tested two methods to modify CT model thresholds to adjust the traditional CT models based on image date to determine if the results would enable us to map and classify aquatic vegetation for periods when no ground-based data were available. We assessed the results with ground-truth samples and area agreement with traditional CT models. Results showed that CT models modified from a linear adjustment based on the relationship between ranked values of SFs between two image dates produced map accuracies comparable with those obtained from the traditional CT models and suggest that the method we proposed is feasible for mapping aquatic vegetation types in lakes when ground data are not available. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Towards Remote Long-Term Monitoring of Wetland Landscapes)
Open AccessArticle
The Multi-Resolution Land Characteristics (MRLC) Consortium — 20 Years of Development and Integration of USA National Land Cover Data
Remote Sens. 2014, 6(8), 7424-7441; https://doi.org/10.3390/rs6087424
Received: 6 May 2014 / Revised: 16 July 2014 / Accepted: 24 July 2014 / Published: 11 August 2014
Cited by 22 | Viewed by 2705 | PDF Full-text (1522 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
The Multi-Resolution Land Characteristics (MRLC) Consortium demonstrates the national benefits of USA Federal collaboration. Starting in the mid-1990s as a small group with the straightforward goal of compiling a comprehensive national Landsat dataset that could be used to meet agencies’ needs, MRLC has [...] Read more.
The Multi-Resolution Land Characteristics (MRLC) Consortium demonstrates the national benefits of USA Federal collaboration. Starting in the mid-1990s as a small group with the straightforward goal of compiling a comprehensive national Landsat dataset that could be used to meet agencies’ needs, MRLC has grown into a group of 10 USA Federal Agencies that coordinate the production of five different products, including the National Land Cover Database (NLCD), the Coastal Change Analysis Program (C-CAP), the Cropland Data Layer (CDL), the Gap Analysis Program (GAP), and the Landscape Fire and Resource Management Planning Tools (LANDFIRE). As a set, the products include almost every aspect of land cover from impervious surface to detailed crop and vegetation types to fire fuel classes. Some products can be used for land cover change assessments because they cover multiple time periods. The MRLC Consortium has become a collaborative forum, where members share research, methodological approaches, and data to produce products using established protocols, and we believe it is a model for the production of integrated land cover products at national to continental scales. We provide a brief overview of each of the main products produced by MRLC and examples of how each product has been used. We follow that with a discussion of the impact of the MRLC program and a brief overview of future plans. Full article
Open AccessArticle
Validation of Global Evapotranspiration Product (MOD16) using Flux Tower Data in the African Savanna, South Africa
Remote Sens. 2014, 6(8), 7406-7423; https://doi.org/10.3390/rs6087406
Received: 1 April 2014 / Revised: 10 July 2014 / Accepted: 14 July 2014 / Published: 11 August 2014
Cited by 52 | Viewed by 3990 | PDF Full-text (2849 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Globally, water is an important resource required for the survival of human beings. Water is a scarce resource in the semi-arid environments, including South Africa. In South Africa, several studies have quantified evapotranspiration (ET) in different ecosystems at a local scale. Accurate spatially [...] Read more.
Globally, water is an important resource required for the survival of human beings. Water is a scarce resource in the semi-arid environments, including South Africa. In South Africa, several studies have quantified evapotranspiration (ET) in different ecosystems at a local scale. Accurate spatially explicit information on ET is rare in the country mainly due to lack of appropriate tools. In recent years, a remote sensing ET product from the MODerate Resolution Imaging Spectrometer (MOD16) has been developed. However, its accuracy is not known in South African ecosystems. The objective of this study was to validate the MOD16 ET product using data from two eddy covariance flux towers, namely; Skukuza and Malopeni installed in a savanna and woodland ecosystem within the Kruger National Park, South Africa. Eight day cumulative ET data from the flux towers was calculated to coincide with the eight day MOD16 products over a period of 10 years from 2000 to 2010. The Skukuza flux tower results showed inconsistent comparisons with MOD16 ET. The Malopeni site achieved a poorer comparison with MOD16 ET compared to the Skukuza, and due to a shorter measurement period, data validation was performed for 2009 only. The inconsistent comparison of MOD16 and flux tower-based ET can be attributed to, among other things, the parameterization of the Penman-Monteith model, flux tower measurement errors, and flux tower footprint vs. MODIS pixel. MOD16 is important for global inference of ET, but for use in South Africa's integrated water management, a locally parameterized and improved product should be developed. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
Application of the Regional Water Mass Variations from GRACE Satellite Gravimetry to Large-Scale Water Management in Africa
Remote Sens. 2014, 6(8), 7379-7405; https://doi.org/10.3390/rs6087379
Received: 30 March 2014 / Revised: 16 July 2014 / Accepted: 18 July 2014 / Published: 7 August 2014
Cited by 31 | Viewed by 4116 | PDF Full-text (10006 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Time series of regional 2° × 2° Gravity Recovery and Climate Experiment (GRACE) solutions of surface water mass change have been computed over Africa from 2003 to 2012 with a 10-day resolution by using a new regional approach. These regional maps are used [...] Read more.
Time series of regional 2° × 2° Gravity Recovery and Climate Experiment (GRACE) solutions of surface water mass change have been computed over Africa from 2003 to 2012 with a 10-day resolution by using a new regional approach. These regional maps are used to describe and quantify water mass change. The contribution of African hydrology to actual sea level rise is negative and small in magnitude (i.e., −0.1 mm/y of equivalent sea level (ESL)) mainly explained by the water retained in the Zambezi River basin. Analysis of the regional water mass maps is used to distinguish different zones of important water mass variations, with the exception of the dominant seasonal cycle of the African monsoon in the Sahel and Central Africa. The analysis of the regional solutions reveals the accumulation in the Okavango swamp and South Niger. It confirms the continuous depletion of water in the North Sahara aquifer at the rate of −2.3 km3/y, with a decrease in early 2008. Synergistic use of altimetry-based lake water volume with total water storage (TWS) from GRACE permits a continuous monitoring of sub-surface water storage for large lake drainage areas. These different applications demonstrate the potential of the GRACE mission for the management of water resources at the regional scale. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
Estimating High Spatial Resolution Air Temperature for Regions with Limited in situ Data Using MODIS Products
Remote Sens. 2014, 6(8), 7360-7378; https://doi.org/10.3390/rs6087360
Received: 14 May 2014 / Revised: 25 July 2014 / Accepted: 28 July 2014 / Published: 6 August 2014
Cited by 12 | Viewed by 2702 | PDF Full-text (5024 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
The use of land surface temperature and vertical temperature profile data from Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS), to estimate high spatial resolution daily and monthly maximum and minimum 2 m above ground level (AGL) air temperatures for regions with limited in situ data [...] Read more.
The use of land surface temperature and vertical temperature profile data from Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS), to estimate high spatial resolution daily and monthly maximum and minimum 2 m above ground level (AGL) air temperatures for regions with limited in situ data was investigated. A diurnal air temperature change model was proposed to consider the differences between the MODIS overpass times and the times of daily maximum and minimum temperatures, resulting in the improvements of the estimation in terms of error values, especially for minimum air temperature. Both land surface temperature and vertical temperature profile data produced relatively high coefficient of determination values and small Mean Absolute Error (MAE) and Root Mean Square Error (RMSE) values for air temperature estimation. The correction of the estimates using two gridded datasets, National Centers for Environmental Prediction/National Center for Atmospheric Research (NCEP/NCAR) reanalysis and Climate Research Unit (CRU), was performed and the errors were reduced, especially for maximum air temperature. The correction of daily and monthly air temperature estimates using the NCEP/NCAR reanalysis data, however, still produced relatively large error values compared to existing studies, while the correction of monthly air temperature estimates using the CRU data significantly reduced the errors; the MAE values for estimating monthly maximum air temperature range between 1.73 °C and 1.86 °C. Uncorrected land surface temperature generally performed better for estimating monthly minimum air temperature and the MAE values range from 1.18 °C to 1.89 °C. The suggested methodology on a monthly time scale may be applied in many data sparse areas to be used for regional environmental and agricultural studies that require high spatial resolution air temperature data. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
Urban Built-Up Area Extraction from Landsat TM/ETM+ Images Using Spectral Information and Multivariate Texture
Remote Sens. 2014, 6(8), 7339-7359; https://doi.org/10.3390/rs6087339
Received: 1 May 2014 / Revised: 5 July 2014 / Accepted: 30 July 2014 / Published: 6 August 2014
Cited by 24 | Viewed by 4169 | PDF Full-text (11438 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Urban built-up area information is required by various applications. However, urban built-up area extraction using moderate resolution satellite data, such as Landsat series data, is still a challenging task due to significant intra-urban heterogeneity and spectral confusion with other land cover types. In [...] Read more.
Urban built-up area information is required by various applications. However, urban built-up area extraction using moderate resolution satellite data, such as Landsat series data, is still a challenging task due to significant intra-urban heterogeneity and spectral confusion with other land cover types. In this paper, a new method that combines spectral information and multivariate texture is proposed. The multivariate textures are separately extracted from multispectral data using a multivariate variogram with different distance measures, i.e., Euclidean, Mahalanobis and spectral angle distances. The multivariate textures and the spectral bands are then combined for urban built-up area extraction. Because the urban built-up area is the only target class, a one-class classifier, one-class support vector machine, is used. For comparison, the classical gray-level co-occurrence matrix (GLCM) is also used to extract image texture. The proposed method was evaluated using bi-temporal Landsat TM/ETM+ data of two megacity areas in China. Results demonstrated that the proposed method outperformed the use of spectral information alone and the joint use of the spectral information and the GLCM texture. In particular, the inclusion of multivariate variogram textures with spectral angle distance achieved the best results. The proposed method provides an effective way of extracting urban built-up areas from Landsat series images and could be applicable to other applications. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
Global-Scale Associations of Vegetation Phenology with Rainfall and Temperature at a High Spatio-Temporal Resolution
Remote Sens. 2014, 6(8), 7320-7338; https://doi.org/10.3390/rs6087320
Received: 6 January 2014 / Revised: 28 June 2014 / Accepted: 9 July 2014 / Published: 6 August 2014
Cited by 11 | Viewed by 3414 | PDF Full-text (14286 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Phenology response to climatic variables is a vital indicator for understanding changes in biosphere processes as related to possible climate change. We investigated global phenology relationships to precipitation and land surface temperature (LST) at high spatial and temporal resolution for calendar years 2008–2011. [...] Read more.
Phenology response to climatic variables is a vital indicator for understanding changes in biosphere processes as related to possible climate change. We investigated global phenology relationships to precipitation and land surface temperature (LST) at high spatial and temporal resolution for calendar years 2008–2011. We used cross-correlation between MODIS Enhanced Vegetation Index (EVI), MODIS LST and Precipitation Estimation from Remotely Sensed Information using Artificial Neural Networks (PERSIANN) gridded rainfall to map phenology relationships at 1-km spatial resolution and weekly temporal resolution. We show these data to be rich in spatiotemporal information, illustrating distinct phenology patterns as a result of complex overlapping gradients of climate, ecosystem and land use/land cover. The data are consistent with broad-scale, coarse-resolution modeled ecosystem limitations to moisture, temperature and irradiance. We suggest that high-resolution phenology data are useful as both an input and complement to land use/land cover classifiers and for understanding climate change vulnerability in natural and anthropogenic landscapes. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
The Penetration Depth Derived from the Synthesis of ALOS/PALSAR InSAR Data and ASTER GDEM for the Mapping of Forest Biomass
Remote Sens. 2014, 6(8), 7303-7319; https://doi.org/10.3390/rs6087303
Received: 28 April 2014 / Revised: 16 July 2014 / Accepted: 16 July 2014 / Published: 5 August 2014
Cited by 6 | Viewed by 2738 | PDF Full-text (6446 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
The Global Digital Elevation Model produced from stereo images of Advanced Spaceborne Thermal Emission and Reflection Radiometer data (ASTER GDEM) covers land surfaces between latitudes of 83°N and 83°S. The Phased Array type L-band Synthetic Aperture Radar (PALSAR) onboard Advanced Land Observing Satellite [...] Read more.
The Global Digital Elevation Model produced from stereo images of Advanced Spaceborne Thermal Emission and Reflection Radiometer data (ASTER GDEM) covers land surfaces between latitudes of 83°N and 83°S. The Phased Array type L-band Synthetic Aperture Radar (PALSAR) onboard Advanced Land Observing Satellite (ALOS) collected many SAR images since it was launched on 24 January 2006. The combination of ALOS/PALSAR interferometric data and ASTER GDEM should provide the penetration depth of SAR data assuming ASTER GDEM was the elevation of vegetation canopy top. It would be correlated with forest biomass because penetration depth could be affected by forest density and forest canopy height. Their combination held great promises for the forest biomass mapping over large area. The feasibility of forest biomass mapping through the data synthesis of ALOS/PALSAR InSAR data and ASTER GDEM was investigated in this study. A procedure for the extraction of penetration depth was firstly proposed. Then three models were built for biomass estimation: (I) model only using backscattering coefficients of ALOS/PALSAR data; (II) model only using penetration depth; (III) model using both of them. The biomass estimated from Lidar data was taken as reference data to evaluate the three different models. The results showed that the combination of backscattering coefficients and penetration depth gave the best accuracy. The forest disturbance has to be considered in forest biomass estimation because of the long time span of ASTER data for generating ASTER GDEM. The spatial homogeneity could be used to improve estimation accuracy. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
Hierarchical Segmentation Framework for Identifying Natural Vegetation: A Case Study of the Tehachapi Mountains, California
Remote Sens. 2014, 6(8), 7276-7302; https://doi.org/10.3390/rs6087276
Received: 31 January 2014 / Revised: 23 May 2014 / Accepted: 24 July 2014 / Published: 5 August 2014
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 2993 | PDF Full-text (44283 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Two critical limitations of very high resolution imagery interpretations for time-series analysis are higher imagery variances and large data sizes. Although object-based analyses with a multi-scale framework for diverse object sizes are one potential solution, more data requirements and large amounts of testing [...] Read more.
Two critical limitations of very high resolution imagery interpretations for time-series analysis are higher imagery variances and large data sizes. Although object-based analyses with a multi-scale framework for diverse object sizes are one potential solution, more data requirements and large amounts of testing at high costs are required. In this study, I applied a three-level hierarchical vegetation framework for reducing those costs, and a three-step procedure was used to evaluate its effects on a digital orthophoto quadrangles with 1 m spatial resolution. Step one and step two were for image segmentation optimized for delineation of tree density, which involved global Otsu’s method followed by the random walker algorithm. Step three was for detailed species delineations, which were derived from multiresolution segmentation, in two test areas. Step one and step two were able to delineating tree density segments and label species association robustly, compared to previous hierarchical frameworks. However, step three was limited by less image information to produce detailed, reasonable image objects with optimal scale parameters for species labeling. This hierarchical vegetation framework has potential to develop baseline data for evaluating climate change impacts on vegetation at lower cost using widely available data and a personal laptop. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Advances in Geographic Object-Based Image Analysis (GEOBIA))
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Open AccessArticle
Estimation of Gross Domestic Product Using Multi-Sensor Remote Sensing Data: A Case Study in Zhejiang Province, East China
Remote Sens. 2014, 6(8), 7260-7275; https://doi.org/10.3390/rs6087260
Received: 30 June 2014 / Revised: 28 July 2014 / Accepted: 29 July 2014 / Published: 4 August 2014
Cited by 15 | Viewed by 2781 | PDF Full-text (7323 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
There exists a spatial mismatch between socioeconomic data, such as Gross Domestic Product (GDP), and physical and environmental datasets. This study provides a dasymetric approach for GDP estimation at a fine scale by combining the Defense Meteorological Satellite Program Operational Linescan System (DMSP/OLS) [...] Read more.
There exists a spatial mismatch between socioeconomic data, such as Gross Domestic Product (GDP), and physical and environmental datasets. This study provides a dasymetric approach for GDP estimation at a fine scale by combining the Defense Meteorological Satellite Program Operational Linescan System (DMSP/OLS) nighttime imagery, enhanced vegetation index (EVI), and land cover data. Despite the advantages of DMSP/OLS nighttime imagery in estimating human activities, its drawbacks, including coarse resolution, overglow, and saturation effects, limit its application. Hence, high-resolution EVI data were integrated with DMSP/OLS in this study to create a Human Settlement Index (HSI) for estimating the GDP of secondary and tertiary industries. The GDP of the primary industry was then estimated on the basis of land cover data, and the area with the GDP of the primary industry was classified by a threshold technique (DN ≤ 8). The regression model for GDP distribution estimation was implemented in Zhejiang Province in southeast China, and a GDP density map was generated at a resolution of 250 m × 250 m. Compared with the outcome of taking DMSP/OLS as a unique parameter, estimation errors obviously decreased. This study offers a low-cost and accurate approach for rapidly estimating high-resolution GDP distribution to construct an important database for the government when formulating developmental strategies. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Remote Sensing with Nighttime Lights)
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Open AccessReview
Remote Geophysical Observatory in Antarctica with HF Data Transmission: A Review
Remote Sens. 2014, 6(8), 7233-7259; https://doi.org/10.3390/rs6087233
Received: 19 June 2014 / Revised: 23 July 2014 / Accepted: 24 July 2014 / Published: 4 August 2014
Cited by 11 | Viewed by 2435 | PDF Full-text (6219 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
The geophysical observatory in the Antarctic Spanish Station, Juan Carlos I (ASJI), on Livingston Island, has been monitoring the magnetic field in the Antarctic region for more than fifteen years. In 2004, a vertical incidence ionospheric sounder completed the observatory, which brings a [...] Read more.
The geophysical observatory in the Antarctic Spanish Station, Juan Carlos I (ASJI), on Livingston Island, has been monitoring the magnetic field in the Antarctic region for more than fifteen years. In 2004, a vertical incidence ionospheric sounder completed the observatory, which brings a significant added value in a region with low density of geophysical data. Although the ASJI is only operative during the austral summer, the geomagnetic station records the data throughout the year. A High Frequency (HF) transmission system was installed in 2004 in order to have the geomagnetic data available during the whole year. As the power supply is very limited when the station is not operative, we had to design a low-power HF transceiver with a very simple antenna, due to environmental aspects. Moreover, the flow of information was unidirectional, so the modulation had to be extremely robust since there is no retransmission in case of error. This led us to study the main parameters of the ionospheric channel and to design new modulations specially adapted to very low signal to noise scenarios with high levels of interference. In this paper, a review of the results of our remote geophysical observatory and associated transmission system in Antarctica during the last decade is presented. Full article
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