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Forest structure without ground data: Adaptive Full-Blind Multiple Forward-Mode reflectance model inversion in a mountain pine beetle damaged forest

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A new approach for using canopy reflectance models (CRMs) is presented that requires no field data or knowledge about the study area or imagery. Multiple Forward-Mode Adaptive Full-Blind (MFM-AFB) modelling provides forest biophysical structural information (BSI), and can also be used for classification and spectral mixture analysis at sub-pixel scales without user-specified model inputs, training data or endmember spectra, as these are instead automatically derived. In an example application using 2007 Landsat imagery of forest damaged by a mountain pine beetle (MPB) epidemic in British Columbia, Canada, overall BSI accuracy was within ±1000 stems ha-1 for stand density, ±0.5 m for crown radius and ±1 m tree height for healthy and MPB stands. MFM-AFB software is suitable for regional, multi-temporal and unknown imagery and areas. By not requiring user-specified a priori model inputs to infer BSI, the MFM-AFB approach may help enable mainstream use of diverse and advanced CRMs for image analysis.

Document Type: Research Article


Affiliations: 1: Department of Geography, University of Lethbridge, Lethbridge, Alberta, Canada 2: NASA Goddard Space Flight Center, Greenbelt, MD, USA,JCET, University of Maryland Baltimore County, Baltimore, MD, USA

Publication date: March 1, 2010

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