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Quality Assessment Of Digital Surface Models Generated From IKONOS Imagery

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The growing applications of digital surface models (DSMs) for object detection, segmentation and representation of terrestrial landscapes have provided impetus for further automation of 3D spatial information extraction processes. While new technologies such as lidar are available for almost instant DSM generation, the use of stereoscopic high-resolution satellite imagery (HRSI), coupled with image matching, affords cost-effective measurement of surface topography over large coverage areas. This investigation explores the potential of IKONOS Geo stereo imagery for producing DSMs using an alternative sensor orientation model, namely bias-corrected rational polynomial coefficients (RPCs), and a hybrid image-matching algorithm. To serve both as a reference surface and a basis for comparison, a lidar DSM was employed in the Hobart testfield, a region of differing terrain types and slope. In order to take topographic variation within the modelled surface into account, the lidar strip was divided into separate sub-areas representing differing land cover types. It is shown that over topographically diverse areas, heighting accuracy to better than 3 pixels can be readily achieved. Results improve markedly in feature-rich open and relatively flat terrain, with sub-pixel accuracy being achieved at check points surveyed using the global positioning system (GPS). This assessment demonstrates that the outlook for DSM generation from HRSI is very promising.
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Keywords: DSM; IKONOS; accuracy assessment; high-resolution satellite imagery

Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: 1: ( ), Email: 2: ( ), Email: 3: ( ) University of Melbourne, Australia, Email: 4: ( ), Email: 5: ( ) Swiss Federal Institute of Technology (ETH), Zurich, Switzerland, Email:

Publication date: 2005-06-01

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