Canopy attributes of desert grassland and transition communities derived from multiangular airborne imagery

Mark Chopping, Albert Rango, Kris M. Havstad, Frank R. Schiebe, Jerry C. Ritchie, Thomas J. Schmugge, Andrew N. French, Lihong Su, Lynn McKee, M. Rene Davis

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

52 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

The surface bidirectional reflectance distribution function (BRDF) contains valuable information on canopy physiognomy for desert grassland and grass-shrub transition communities. This information may be accessed by inverting a BRDF model against sets of observations, which encompass important variations in viewing and illumination angles. This paper shows that structural canopy attributes can be derived through inversion of the Simple Geometric Model (SGM) of the BRDF developed in this paper. It is difficult to sample BRDF features from the ground because of the discontinuous nature of the canopies and long intrinsic length scales in remotely sensed spectral measures (>10 m). A multispectral digital camera was therefore used to derive spatial multiangular reflectance data sets from the air and the SGM was validated against and inverted with these. It was also validated using 3-D radiosity simulations driven with maps of field-measured plant dimensions. The interpretation of the retrieved parameter maps (shrub density, shrub width and canopy height) reveals variations in canopy structure within desert grassland and grassland-shrubland transition communities, which are clearly related to structural and optical features in high resolution panchromatic and vegetation index images. To our knowledge, this paper reports on the first attempts to acquire structural canopy attributes of desert landscapes using multiple view angle data at scales less than 1 km. The results point to further opportunities to exploit multiangular data from spaceborne sensors such as the Multiangle Imaging SpectroRadiometer (MISR) and the Compact High Resolution Imaging Spectrometer (CHRIS) on the NASA Terra and European Space Agency's PROBA satellites, respectively.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)339-354
Number of pages16
JournalRemote Sensing of Environment
Volume85
Issue number3
DOIs
StatePublished - 30 May 2003

Fingerprint

airborne sensing
deserts
bidirectional reflectance
desert
grasslands
reflectance
grassland
canopy
Distribution functions
shrub
shrubs
Imaging techniques
CHRIS
image analysis
MISR
spectroradiometers
Digital cameras
surface reflectance
shrubland
NASA

Keywords

  • Desert grassland
  • Multiangular airborne imagery
  • Transition communities

Cite this

Chopping, Mark ; Rango, Albert ; Havstad, Kris M. ; Schiebe, Frank R. ; Ritchie, Jerry C. ; Schmugge, Thomas J. ; French, Andrew N. ; Su, Lihong ; McKee, Lynn ; Davis, M. Rene. / Canopy attributes of desert grassland and transition communities derived from multiangular airborne imagery. In: Remote Sensing of Environment. 2003 ; Vol. 85, No. 3. pp. 339-354.
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Chopping, M, Rango, A, Havstad, KM, Schiebe, FR, Ritchie, JC, Schmugge, TJ, French, AN, Su, L, McKee, L & Davis, MR 2003, 'Canopy attributes of desert grassland and transition communities derived from multiangular airborne imagery', Remote Sensing of Environment, vol. 85, no. 3, pp. 339-354. https://doi.org/10.1016/S0034-4257(03)00012-9

Canopy attributes of desert grassland and transition communities derived from multiangular airborne imagery. / Chopping, Mark; Rango, Albert; Havstad, Kris M.; Schiebe, Frank R.; Ritchie, Jerry C.; Schmugge, Thomas J.; French, Andrew N.; Su, Lihong; McKee, Lynn; Davis, M. Rene.

In: Remote Sensing of Environment, Vol. 85, No. 3, 30.05.2003, p. 339-354.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

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AU - Rango, Albert

AU - Havstad, Kris M.

AU - Schiebe, Frank R.

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AU - Schmugge, Thomas J.

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