Forest canopy cover and height from MISR in topographically complex southwestern US landscapes assessed with high quality reference data

Mark Chopping, Malcolm North, Jiquan Chen, Crystal B. Schaaf, J. Bryan Blair, John V. Martonchik, Michael A. Bull

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

27 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

This study addresses the retrieval of spatially contiguous canopy cover and height estimates in southwestern US forests via inversion of a geometric-optical (GO) model against surface bidirectional reflectance factor (BRF) estimates from the Multi-angle Imaging SpectroRadiometer (MISR). Model inversion can provide such maps if good estimates of the background bidirectional reflectance distribution function (BRDF) are available. The study area is in the Sierra National Forest in the Sierra Nevada of California. Tree number density, mean crown radius, and fractional cover reference estimates were obtained via analysis of QuickBird 0.6 m spatial resolution panchromatic imagery using the CANopy Analysis with Panchromatic Imagery (CANAPI) algorithm, while RH50, RH75 and RH100 (50%, 75%, and 100% energy return) height data were obtained from the NASA Laser Vegetation Imaging Sensor (LVIS), a full waveform light detection and ranging (lidar) instrument. These canopy parameters were used to drive a modified version of the simple GO model (SGM), accurately reproducing patterns of MISR 672 nm band surface reflectance (mean RMSE = 0.011, mean R 2 = 0.82, N = 1048). Cover and height maps were obtained through model inversion against MISR 672 nm reflectance estimates on a 250 m grid. The free parameters were tree number density and mean crown radius. RMSE values with respect to reference data for the cover and height retrievals were 0.05 and 6.65 m, respectively, with R 2 of 0.54 and 0.49. MISR can thus provide maps of forest cover and height in areas of topographic variation although refinements are required to improve retrieval precision.

Original languageEnglish
Article number6153395
Pages (from-to)44-58
Number of pages15
JournalIEEE Journal of Selected Topics in Applied Earth Observations and Remote Sensing
Volume5
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - 1 Feb 2012

Fingerprint

MISR
forest canopy
Imaging techniques
bidirectional reflectance
surface reflectance
canopy
imagery
QuickBird
forest cover
Distribution functions
NASA
reflectance
spatial resolution
laser
sensor
Lasers
vegetation
Sensors
energy
inversion

Keywords

  • Biomass
  • canopy
  • forestry
  • lidar
  • modeling
  • multiangle
  • topography

Cite this

Chopping, Mark ; North, Malcolm ; Chen, Jiquan ; Schaaf, Crystal B. ; Blair, J. Bryan ; Martonchik, John V. ; Bull, Michael A. / Forest canopy cover and height from MISR in topographically complex southwestern US landscapes assessed with high quality reference data. In: IEEE Journal of Selected Topics in Applied Earth Observations and Remote Sensing. 2012 ; Vol. 5, No. 1. pp. 44-58.
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abstract = "This study addresses the retrieval of spatially contiguous canopy cover and height estimates in southwestern US forests via inversion of a geometric-optical (GO) model against surface bidirectional reflectance factor (BRF) estimates from the Multi-angle Imaging SpectroRadiometer (MISR). Model inversion can provide such maps if good estimates of the background bidirectional reflectance distribution function (BRDF) are available. The study area is in the Sierra National Forest in the Sierra Nevada of California. Tree number density, mean crown radius, and fractional cover reference estimates were obtained via analysis of QuickBird 0.6 m spatial resolution panchromatic imagery using the CANopy Analysis with Panchromatic Imagery (CANAPI) algorithm, while RH50, RH75 and RH100 (50{\%}, 75{\%}, and 100{\%} energy return) height data were obtained from the NASA Laser Vegetation Imaging Sensor (LVIS), a full waveform light detection and ranging (lidar) instrument. These canopy parameters were used to drive a modified version of the simple GO model (SGM), accurately reproducing patterns of MISR 672 nm band surface reflectance (mean RMSE = 0.011, mean R 2 = 0.82, N = 1048). Cover and height maps were obtained through model inversion against MISR 672 nm reflectance estimates on a 250 m grid. The free parameters were tree number density and mean crown radius. RMSE values with respect to reference data for the cover and height retrievals were 0.05 and 6.65 m, respectively, with R 2 of 0.54 and 0.49. MISR can thus provide maps of forest cover and height in areas of topographic variation although refinements are required to improve retrieval precision.",
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Forest canopy cover and height from MISR in topographically complex southwestern US landscapes assessed with high quality reference data. / Chopping, Mark; North, Malcolm; Chen, Jiquan; Schaaf, Crystal B.; Blair, J. Bryan; Martonchik, John V.; Bull, Michael A.

In: IEEE Journal of Selected Topics in Applied Earth Observations and Remote Sensing, Vol. 5, No. 1, 6153395, 01.02.2012, p. 44-58.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

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AU - Chopping, Mark

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AU - Chen, Jiquan

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