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Article

Using UAV Visible Images to Estimate the Soil Moisture of Steppe

by 1,2,†, 3,4,† and 1,2,*
1
State Key Laboratory of Grassland Agro-escosystems, College of Pastoral Agriculture Science and Technology, Lanzhou University, Lanzhou 730020, China
2
Key Laboratory of Grassland Livestock Industry Innovation, Ministry of Agriculture, Lanzhou University, Lanzhou 730020, China
3
Institute of Fragile Eco-environment, Nantong University, Nantong 226007, China
4
School of Geographic Science, Nantong University, Nantong 226007, China
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Fengshuai Lu and Yi Sun contributed equally to this work.
Water 2020, 12(9), 2334; https://doi.org/10.3390/w12092334
Received: 3 July 2020 / Revised: 14 August 2020 / Accepted: 15 August 2020 / Published: 19 August 2020
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Contributions of Remote Sensing to Hydrologic Flux Quantification)
Although unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) have been utilized in many aspects of steppe management, they have not been commonly used to monitor the soil moisture of steppes. To explore the technology of detecting soil moisture by UAV in a typical steppe, we conducted a watered test in the Loess Plateau of China, quantitatively revealing the relationship between the surface soil moisture and the visible images captured using an UAV. The results showed that the surface soil moisture was significantly correlated with the brightness of UAV visible images, and the surface soil moisture could be estimated based on the brightness of the visible images of the UAV combined with vegetation coverage. This study addresses the problem of soil moisture measurement in flat regions of arid and semi-arid steppes at the mesoscale, and contributes to the popularization of the use of UAVs in steppe ecological research. View Full-Text
Keywords: grassland; grazing; vegetation coverage; visible image; brightness grassland; grazing; vegetation coverage; visible image; brightness
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MDPI and ACS Style

Lu, F.; Sun, Y.; Hou, F. Using UAV Visible Images to Estimate the Soil Moisture of Steppe. Water 2020, 12, 2334. https://doi.org/10.3390/w12092334

AMA Style

Lu F, Sun Y, Hou F. Using UAV Visible Images to Estimate the Soil Moisture of Steppe. Water. 2020; 12(9):2334. https://doi.org/10.3390/w12092334

Chicago/Turabian Style

Lu, Fengshuai, Yi Sun, and Fujiang Hou. 2020. "Using UAV Visible Images to Estimate the Soil Moisture of Steppe" Water 12, no. 9: 2334. https://doi.org/10.3390/w12092334

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