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Algorithm for global leaf area index retrieval using satellite imagery

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5 Author(s)
Feng Deng ; Dept. of Geogr., Toronto Univ., Ont. ; Mingzhen Chen ; Plummer, S. ; Mingzhen Chen
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Leaf area index (LAI) is one of the most important Earth surface parameters in modeling ecosystems and their interaction with climate. Based on a geometrical optical model (Four-Scale) and LAI algorithms previously derived for Canada-wide applications, this paper presents a new algorithm for the global retrieval of LAI where the bidirectional reflectance distribution function (BRDF) is considered explicitly in the algorithm and hence removing the need of doing BRDF corrections and normalizations to the input images. The core problem of integrating BRDF into the LAI algorithm is that nonlinear BRDF kernels that are used to relate spectral reflectances to LAI are also LAI dependent, and no analytical solution is found to derive directly LAI from reflectance data. This problem is solved through developing a simple iteration procedure. The relationships between LAI and reflectances of various spectral bands (red, near infrared, and shortwave infrared) are simulated with Four-Scale with a multiple scattering scheme. Based on the model simulations, the key coefficients in the BRDF kernels are fitted with Chebyshev polynomials of the second kind. Spectral indices - the simple ratio and the reduced simple ratio - are used to effectively combine the spectral bands for LAI retrieval. Example regional and global LAI maps are produced. Accuracy assessment on a Canada-wide LAI map is made in comparison with a previously validated 1998 LAI map and ground measurements made in seven Landsat scenes

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Geoscience and Remote Sensing, IEEE Transactions on  (Volume:44 ,  Issue: 8 )