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The use of the Minnaert correction for land‐cover classification in mountainous terrain

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Land‐cover classifications in mountainous terrain are often hampered by the topographic effect. Several strategies can be pursued to correct for this. A traditional approach is to use training areas for the same land‐cover class for different topographic positions and later merge those into one class. Other solutions involve topographic corrections, such as a Minnaert correction. In this study the classification result of the traditional training‐area approach was compared with the classification result of a Minnaert‐corrected image. In order to derive the Minnaert constants, a SPOT XS scene of the Santa Monica Mountains, USA, was divided into three visually relatively homogeneous regions. Eighty per cent of the pixels were assigned the same land cover in both classifications. Differences in classification were mainly in the section of the image that had more diverse land cover than in the more homogeneous chaparral‐covered eastern section. This supports previous findings that the Minnaert constant needs to be derived for individual land‐cover classes. The findings also suggest that after the Minnaert correction the resulting classification is comparable to the classification obtained using a more traditional approach.
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Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: 1: IIHR‐Hydroscience and Engineering, The University of Iowa, 100 Hydraulics Laboratory, Iowa City, Iowa 52242 2: Department of Geoscience, The University of Iowa, 121 Trowbridge Hall, Iowa City, Iowa 52242

Publication date: 2005-09-10

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