SPOT4 potential for the monitoring of tropical vegetation. A case study in Sumatra
This paper assesses the potential capabilities of the new SPOT4 system, launched in March 1998, for vegetation analysis and monitoring in tropical areas. SPOT4 characteristics are: (1) a simultaneous acquisition at 20m resolution (HRVIR instrument) and 1km resolution (VEGETATION instrument), and (2) a MIR channel at both resolutions. Two Landsat TM scenes (1993, 1995) over Central Sumatra were used to simulate SPOT4 images. Colour composites and classifications benefited a lot from the MIR at both resolutions. VEGETATION simulations brought much more information than what is usually available from NOAA-AVHRR data. Results show that simultaneous multi-spatial resolution combined with such spectral characteristics promise to greatly improve the analysis and the global scale monitoring of vegetation changes in tropical regions.