Comparison of built‐up area maps produced within the global human settlement framework
The validation of built‐up areas derived from different sensors is crucial for gaining a deeper understanding of the consistency and interoperability between them. This article presents the methodology and results of an inter‐sensor comparison of built‐up area data derived from Landsat, Sentinel‐1, Sentinel‐2, and SPOT5/SPOT6. The assessment was performed for 13 cities across the world for which cartographic reference building footprints were available. Several validation approaches were used: cumulative built‐up curve analysis, pixel‐by‐pixel performance metrics, and regression analysis. The results indicate that Sentinel‐1 and Sentinel‐2 contribute greatly to improved built‐up area detection compared to Landsat, within the global human settlement framework. However, Sentinel‐2 tends to show high omission errors while Landsat tends to have the lowest omission error. The built‐up area obtained from SPOT5/SPOT6 shows high consistency with the reference data for all European cities, and hence can potentially be considered as a reference dataset for wall‐to‐wall validation in Europe.
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Document Type: Research Article
Publication date: December 1, 2018