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Crop and land cover classification in Iran using Landsat 7 imagery

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Remote sensing provides one way of obtaining more accurate information on total cropped area and crop types in irrigated areas. The technique is particularly well suited to arid and semi‐arid areas where almost all vegetative growth is associated with irrigation. In order to obtain more information with regard to crop patterns in the irrigated areas in the Zayandeh Rud basin, a classification analysis was made of the Landsat 7 image of 2 July 2000. The target of the classification was to primarily focus on the agricultural land use. The date of the image fell in the transition period where the first crops were harvested and many fields were being prepared for the second crop. The image has therefore captured an instantaneous picture of a system generally in transition from the first to the second crop, but with significant differences from system to system, both with respect to crop types and agricultural cycles. The overall accuracy of image registration was about 30┬ám (one pixel). Fieldwork was conducted on various occasions in August–October 2000 and May–October 2001. Farmers were interviewed to determine the situation on 2 July 2000. Fields were mapped in detail with the GPS instruments, and data compiled for 112 fields. Using a supervised classification system, training areas were selected and initial classifications were made to determine the validity of the classes. After merging several classes and testing several new classes a final classification system was made. All seven Landsat bands were used in the determination of the feature statistics. The final classification was made with the minimum distance algorithm. The statistics with respect to areas and crop type for the districts was obtained by crossing the raster map with the irrigation district raster map. The results with respect to crop type and total irrigated area per district were compared with those of previous studies. This included both NOAA/AVHRR and conventional agricultural district statistics.

Document Type: Research Article


Affiliations: 1: Agricultural Engineering Research Institute, PO Box 31585‐845, Karaj, Iran 2: Esfahan Agricultural Research Center, PO Box 81785‐19, Esfahan, Iran 3: International Water Management Institute, PO Box 2075, Colombo, Sri Lanka

Publication date: 2006-10-10

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