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An Evaluation of the Use of Atmospheric and BRDF Correction to Standardize Landsat Data

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7 Author(s)
Fuqin Li ; Nat. Earth Obs. Group, Geosci. Australia, ACT, Australia ; Jupp, D.L.B. ; Reddy, S. ; Lymburner, L.
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Normalizing for atmospheric and land surface bidirectional reflectance distribution function (BRDF) effects is essential in satellite data processing. It is important both for a single scene when the combination of land covers, sun, and view angles create anisotropy and for multiple scenes in which the sun angle changes. As a consequence, it is important for inter-sensor calibration and comparison. Procedures based on physics-based models have been applied successfully with the Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) data. For Landsat and other higher resolution data, similar options exist. However, the estimation of BRDF models using internal fitting is not available due to the smaller variation of view and solar angles and infrequent revisits. In this paper, we explore the potential for developing operational procedures to correct Landsat data using coupled physics-based atmospheric and BRDF models. The process was realized using BRDF shape functions derived from MODIS with the MODTRAN 4 radiative transfer model. The atmospheric and BRDF correction algorithm was tested for reflectance factor estimation using Landsat data for two sites with different land covers in Australia. The Landsat reflectance values had a good agreement with ground based spectroradiometer measurements. In addition, overlapping images from adjacent paths in Queensland, Australia, were also used to validate the BRDF correction. The results clearly show that the algorithm can remove most of the BRDF effect without empirical adjustment. The comparison between normalized Landsat and MODIS reflectance factor also shows a good relationship, indicating that cross calibration between the two sensors is achievable.

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Selected Topics in Applied Earth Observations and Remote Sensing, IEEE Journal of  (Volume:3 ,  Issue: 3 )