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Biomass estimation of mixed forest landscape using a Fourier transform texture-based approach on very-high-resolution optical satellite imagery

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Assessment of forest structure parameters via remote-sensing data offers the opportunity to examine stand parameters and to detect degradation and forest dynamics, such as above-ground biomass (AGB), at the landscape scale. While much attention has focused on spectrum-based and radar backscatter approaches for assessing forest biomass, texture-based approaches show strong promise. This work makes use of the novel Fourier transform textural ordination (FOTO) method, which involves the combination of 2D fast Fourier transform (FFT) and ordination through principal component analysis (PCA) for characterizing the structural and textural properties of vegetation. This technique presents the potential of Fourier transform approaches in estimating the different forest types, their stand structure, and biomass dynamics in the context of an oil palm–tropical forest landscape in Sabah, Malaysian Borneo. The method was applied to the recordings of very-high-resolution (VHR) Satellite Pour l’Observation de la Terre (SPOT) imagery of the study area. The technique proved useful in distinguishing between the forest types and developing individual biomass estimate models for various forest types. Results show that the FOTO method is able correctly to resolve high AGB values of various forest types. These findings are in agreement with the results based on ground measurements.
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Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: 1: Forest Ecology and Conservation Group, Department of Plant Sciences, University of Cambridge, Cambridge, UK 2: Environmental Change Institute, University of Oxford, Oxford, UK 3: School of Geography and the Environment, University of Oxford, Oxford, UK

Publication date: May 3, 2014

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