Remote Sensing

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ISSN / EISSN : 20724292 / 20724292
Current Publisher: MDPI (10.3390)
Total articles ≅ 8,983
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Ronggang Huang, Liming Jiang, Hansheng Wang, Bisheng Yang
Published: 13 October 2019
by MDPI
Remote Sensing, Volume 11; doi:10.3390/rs11202373

Abstract:A crevasse is an important surface feature of a glacier. This study aims to detect crevasses from high-density airborne LiDAR point clouds. However, existing methods continue to suffer from the data holes within the crevasse region and the influence of the undulating non-crevasse glacier surfaces. Therefore, a bidirectional analysis method is proposed to robustly extract the crevasses from the point clouds, which utilizes their vertical and horizontal characteristics. First, crevasse points are separated from non-crevasse points using a hybrid-entity method, where the height difference and the nearly vertical characteristic of a crevasse sidewall are considered, to better distinguish the crevasses from the undulating non-crevasse glacier surfaces. Second, the crevasse regions/edges are adaptively delineated by a local statistical analysis method that is based on a novel feature of the Delaunay triangulation mesh of non-crevasse points in the horizontal plane. Last, the pseudo-crevasse points and regions are removed by a cross-analysis method. To test the performance of the proposed method, this study selected airborne LiDAR point clouds from two sites of Alaskan glaciers (i.e., Tyndall Glacier and Seward Glacier) as the experimental datasets. The results were verified by a comparison with the ground truth that was manually delineated. The proposed method achieved acceptable results: the recall, precision, and F 1 scores of both sites exceeded 94.00%. Moreover, a comparative experiment was carried out and the results confirmed that the proposed method achieved superior performance.
Mohammed Alkhatib, Miguel Velez-Reyes
Published: 13 October 2019
by MDPI
Remote Sensing, Volume 11; doi:10.3390/rs11202374

Abstract:In this paper, an unsupervised unmixing approach based on superpixel representation combined with regional partitioning is presented. A reduced-size image representation is obtained using superpixel segmentation where each superpixel is represented by its mean spectra. The superpixel image representation is then partitioned into regions using quadtree segmentation based on the Shannon entropy. Spectral endmembers are extracted from each region that corresponds to a leaf of the quadtree and combined using clustering into endmember classes. The proposed approach is tested and validated using the HYDICE Urban and ROSIS Pavia data sets. Different levels of qualitative and quantitative assessments are performed based on the available reference data. The proposed approach is also compared with global (no-regional quadtree segmentation) and with pixel-based (no-superpixel representation) unsupervised unmixing approaches. Qualitative assessment was based primarily on agreement with spatial distribution of materials obtained from a reference classification map. Quantitative assessment was based on comparing classification maps generated from abundance maps using winner takes it all with a 50% threshold and a reference classification map. High agreement with the reference classification map was obtained by the proposed approach as evidenced by high kappa values (over 70%). The proposed approach outperforms global unsupervised unmixing approaches with and without superpixel representation that do not account for regional information. The agreement performance of the proposed approach is slightly better when compared to the pixel-based approached using quadtree segmentation. However, the proposed approach resulted in significant computational savings due to the use of the superpixel representation.
Dongyan Zhang, Daoyong Wang, Chunyan Gu, Ning Jin, Haitao Zhao, Gao Chen, Hongyi Liang, Dong Liang
Published: 13 October 2019
by MDPI
Remote Sensing, Volume 11; doi:10.3390/rs11202375

Abstract:Fusarium head blight (FHB), one of the most important diseases of wheat, mainly occurs in the ear. Given that the severity of the disease cannot be accurately identified, the cost of pesticide application increases every year, and the agricultural ecological environment is also polluted. In this study, a neural network (NN) method was proposed based on the red-green-blue (RGB) image to segment wheat ear and disease spot in the field environment, and then to determine the disease grade. Firstly, a segmentation dataset of single wheat ear was constructed to provide a benchmark for the segmentation of the wheat ear. Secondly, a segmentation model of single wheat ear based on the fully convolutional network (FCN) was established to effectively realize the segmentation of the wheat ear in the field environment. An FHB segmentation algorithm was proposed based on a pulse-coupled neural network (PCNN) with K-means clustering of the improved artificial bee colony (IABC) to segment the diseased spot of wheat ear by automatic optimization of PCNN parameters. Finally, the disease grade was calculated using the ratio of the disease spot to the whole wheat ear. The experimental results show that: (1) the accuracy of the segmentation model for single wheat ear constructed in this study is 0.981. The segmentation time is less than 1 s, indicating that the model can quickly and accurately segment wheat ear in the field environment; (2) the segmentation method of the disease spot performed under each evaluation indicator is improved compared with the traditional segmentation methods, and the accuracy is 0.925 in the disease severity identification. These research results can provide important reference value for grading wheat FHB in the field environment, which also can be beneficial for real-time monitoring of other crops’ diseases under near-Earth remote sensing.
Lin Li, Shengbing Zhang, Juan Wu
Published: 13 October 2019
by MDPI
Remote Sensing, Volume 11; doi:10.3390/rs11202376

Abstract:Object detection in remote sensing images on a satellite or aircraft has important economic and military significance and is full of challenges. This task requires not only accurate and efficient algorithms, but also highperformance and low power hardware architecture. However, existing deep learning based object detection algorithms require further optimization in small objects detection, reduced computational complexity and parameter size. Meanwhile, the generalpurpose processor cannot achieve better power efficiency, and the previous design of deep learning processor has still potential for mining parallelism. To address these issues, we propose an efficient contextbased feature fusion single shot multibox detector (CBFFSSD) framework, using lightweight MobileNet as the backbone network to reduce parameters and computational complexity, adding feature fusion units and detecting feature maps to enhance the recognition of small objects and improve detection accuracy. Based on the analysis and optimization of the calculation of each layer in the algorithm, we propose efficient hardware architecture of deep learning processor with multiple neural processing units (NPUs) composed of 2D processing elements (PEs), which can simultaneously calculate multiple output feature maps. The parallel architecture, hierarchical onchip storage organization, and the local register are used to achieve parallel processing, sharing and reuse of data, and make the calculation of processor more efficient. Extensive experiments and comprehensive evaluations on the public NWPU VHR10 dataset and comparisons with some stateoftheart approaches demonstrate the effectiveness and superiority of the proposed framework. Moreover, for evaluating the performance of proposed hardware architecture, we implement it on Xilinx XC7Z100 field programmable gate array (FPGA) and test on the proposed CBFFSSD and VGG16 models. Experimental results show that our processor are more power efficient than general purpose central processing units (CPUs) and graphics processing units (GPUs), and have better performance density than other stateoftheart FPGAbased designs.
Małgorzata Werner, Maciej Kryza, Jakub Guzikowski
Published: 12 October 2019
by MDPI
Remote Sensing, Volume 11; doi:10.3390/rs11202364

Abstract:Based on the Weather Research and Forecasting model with Chemistry (WRF-Chem) model and Gridpoint Statistical Interpolation (GSI) assimilation tool, a forecasting system was used for two selected episodes (winter and summer) over Eastern Europe. During the winter episode, very high particular matter (PM2.5, diameter less than 2.5 µm) concentrations, related to low air temperatures and increased emission from residential heating, were measured at many stations in Poland. During the summer episode, elevated aerosol optical depth (AOD), likely related to the transport of pollution from biomass fires, was observed in Southern Poland. Our aim is to verify if there is a relevant positive impact of surface and satellite data assimilation (DA) on modeled PM2.5 concentrations, and to assess whether there are significant differences in the DA’s impact on concentrations between the two seasons. The results show a significant difference in the impact of surface and satellite DA on the model results between the summer and winter episode, which to a large degree is related to the availability of the satellite data. For example, the application of satellite DA raises the factor of two statistic from 0.18 to 0.78 for the summer episode, whereas this statistic remains unchanged (0.71) for the winter. The study suggests that severe winter air pollution episodes in Poland and Eastern Europe in general, often related to the dense cover of low clouds, will benefit from the assimilation of surface observations rather than satellite data, which can be very sparse in such meteorological situations. In contrast, the assimilation of satellite data can have a greater positive impact on the model results during summer than the assimilation of surface data for the same period.
Ana Del-Campo-Sanchez, Miguel Moreno, Rocio Ballesteros, David Hernandez-Lopez
Published: 12 October 2019
by MDPI
Remote Sensing, Volume 11; doi:10.3390/rs11202365

Abstract:The 3D digital characterization of vegetation is a growing practice in the agronomy sector. Precision agriculture is sustained, among other methods, by variables that remote sensing techniques can digitize. At present, laser scanners make it possible to digitize three-dimensional crop geometry in the form of point clouds. In this work, we developed several methods for calculating the volume of vine wood, with the final intention of using these values as indicators of vegetative vigor on a thematic map. For this, we used a static terrestrial laser scanner (TLS), a mobile scanning system (MMS), and six algorithms that were implemented and adapted to the data captured and to the proposed objective. The results show that, with TLS equipment and the algorithm called convex hull cluster, the volumes of a vine trunk can be obtained with a relative error lower than 7%. Although the accuracy and detail of the cloud obtained with TLS are very high, the cost per unit for the scanned area limits the application of this system for large areas. In contrast to the inoperability of the TLS in large areas of terrain, the MMS and the algorithm based on the L1-medial skeleton and the modelling of cylinders of a certain height and diameter have solved the estimation of volumes with a relative error better than 3%. To conclude, the vigor map elaborated represents the estimated volume of each vine by this method.
Brian Lamb, Maria Tzortziou, Kyle McDonald
Published: 12 October 2019
by MDPI
Remote Sensing, Volume 11; doi:10.3390/rs11202366

Abstract:The spatial extent and vegetation characteristics of tidal wetlands and their change are among the biggest unknowns and largest sources of uncertainty in modeling ecosystem processes and services at the land-ocean interface. Using a combination of moderate-high spatial resolution (≤30 meters) optical and synthetic aperture radar (SAR) satellite imagery, we evaluated several approaches for mapping and characterization of wetlands of the Chesapeake and Delaware Bays. Sentinel-1A, Phased Array type L-band Synthetic Aperture Radar (PALSAR), PALSAR-2, Sentinel-2A, and Landsat 8 imagery were used to map wetlands, with an emphasis on mapping tidal marshes, inundation extents, and functional vegetation classes (persistent vs. non-persistent). We performed initial characterizations at three target wetlands study sites with distinct geomorphologies, hydrologic characteristics, and vegetation communities. We used findings from these target wetlands study sites to inform the selection of timeseries satellite imagery for a regional scale random forest-based classification of wetlands in the Chesapeake and Delaware Bays. Acquisition of satellite imagery, raster manipulations, and timeseries analyses were performed using Google Earth Engine. Random forest classifications were performed using the R programming language. In our regional scale classification, estuarine emergent wetlands were mapped with a producer’s accuracy greater than 88% and a user’s accuracy greater than 83%. Within target wetland sites, functional classes of vegetation were mapped with over 90% user’s and producer’s accuracy for all classes, and greater than 95% accuracy overall. The use of multitemporal SAR and multitemporal optical imagery discussed here provides a straightforward yet powerful approach for accurately mapping tidal freshwater wetlands through identification of non-persistent vegetation, as well as for mapping estuarine emergent wetlands, with direct applications to the improved management of coastal wetlands.
Frank Collas, Wimala Van Iersel, Menno Straatsma, Anthonie Buijse, Rob Leuven
Published: 12 October 2019
by MDPI
Remote Sensing, Volume 11; doi:10.3390/rs11202367

Abstract:Rising surface water temperatures in fluvial systems increasingly affect biodiversity negatively in riverine ecosystems, and a more frequent exceedance of thermal tolerance levels of species is expected to impoverish local species assemblages. Reliable prediction of the effect of increasing water temperature on habitat suitability requires detailed temperature measurements over time. We assessed (1) the accuracy of high-resolution images of water temperature of a side channel in a river floodplain acquired using a consumer-grade thermal camera mounted on an unmanned airborne vehicle (UAV), and (2) the associated habitat suitability for native and alien fish assemblages. Water surface temperatures were mapped four times throughout a hot summer day and calibrated with 24 in-situ temperature loggers in the water at 0.1 m below the surface using linear regression. The calibrated thermal imagery was used to calculate the potentially occurring fraction (POF) of freshwater fish using species sensitivity distributions. We found high temperatures (25–30 °C) in the side channel during mid-day resulting in reduced habitat suitability. The accuracy of water temperature estimates based on the RMSE was 0.53 °C over all flights (R2 = 0.94). Average daily POF was 0.51 and 0.64 for native and alien fish species in the side channel. The error of the POF estimates is 76% lower when water temperature is estimated with thermal UAV imagery compared to temperatures measured at an upstream gauging station. Accurately quantifying water temperature and the heterogeneity thereof is a critical step in adaptation of riverine ecosystems to climate change. Our results show that measurements of surface water temperature can be made accurately and easily using thermal imagery from UAVs allowing for an improved habitat management, but coincident collection of long wave radiation is needed for a more physically-based prediction of water temperature. Because of climate change, management of riverine ecosystems should consider thermal pollution control and facilitate cold water refugia and connectivity between waterbodies in floodplains and the cooler main channel for fish migration during extremely hot summer periods.
Koen Haakman, Juan-Manuel Sayol, Carine Van Der Boog, Caroline Katsman
Published: 12 October 2019
by MDPI
Remote Sensing, Volume 11; doi:10.3390/rs11202368

Abstract:This work quantifies the magnitude, spatial structure, and temporal evolution of the cold wake left by North Atlantic hurricanes. To this end we composited the sea surface temperature anomalies (SSTA) induced by hurricane observations from 2002 to 2018 derived from the international best track archive for climate stewardship (IBTrACS). Cold wake characteristics were distinguished by a set of hurricane and oceanic properties: Hurricane translation speed and intensity, and the characteristics of the upper ocean stratification represented by two barrier layer metrics: Barrier layer thickness (BLT) and barrier layer potential energy (BLPE). The contribution of the above properties to the amplitude of the cold wake was analyzed individually and in combination. The mean magnitude of the hurricane-induced cooling was of 1.7 °C when all hurricanes without any distinction were considered, and the largest cooling was found for slow-moving, strong hurricanes passing over thinner barrier layers, with a cooling above 3.5 °C with respect to pre-storm sea surface temperature (SST) conditions. On average the cold wake needed about 60 days to disappear and experienced a strong decay in the first 20 days, when the magnitude of the cold wake had decreased by 80%. Differences between the cold wakes yielded by mostly infrared and merged infrared and microwave remote sensed SST data were also evaluated, with an overall relative underestimation of the hurricane-induced cooling of about 0.4 °C for infrared-mostly data.
Ahmed El Kenawy, Mohamed Hereher, Sayed Robaa
Published: 12 October 2019
by MDPI
Remote Sensing, Volume 11; doi:10.3390/rs11202369

Abstract:Space-based data have provided important advances in understanding climate systems and processes in arid and semi-arid regions, which are hot-spot regions in terms of climate change and variability. This study assessed the performance of land surface temperatures (LSTs), retrieved from the Moderate-Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) Aqua platform, over Egypt. Eight-day composites of daytime and nighttime LST data were aggregated and validated against near-surface seasonal and annual observational maximum and minimum air temperatures using data from 34 meteorological stations spanning the period from July 2002 to June 2015. A variety of accuracy metrics were employed to evaluate the performance of LST, including the bias, normalized root-mean-square error (nRMSE), Yule–Kendall (YK) skewness measure, and Spearman’s rho coefficient. The ability of LST to reproduce the seasonal cycle, anomalies, temporal variability, and the distribution of warm and cold tails of observational temperatures was also evaluated. Overall, the results indicate better performance of the nighttime LSTs compared to the daytime LSTs. Specifically, while nighttime LST tended to underestimate the minimum air temperature during winter, spring, and autumn on the order of −1.3, −1.2, and −1.4 °C, respectively, daytime LST markedly overestimated the maximum air temperature in all seasons, with values mostly above 5 °C. Importantly, the results indicate that the performance of LST over Egypt varies considerably as a function of season, lithology, and land use. LST performs better during transitional seasons (i.e., spring and autumn) compared to solstices (i.e., winter and summer). The varying interactions and feedbacks between the land surface and the atmosphere, especially the differences between sensible and latent heat fluxes, contribute largely to these seasonal variations. Spatially, LST performs better in areas with sandstone formations and quaternary sediments and, conversely, shows lower accuracy in regions with limestone, igneous, and metamorphic rocks. This behavior can be expected in hybrid arid and semi-arid regions like Egypt, where bare rocks contribute to the majority of the Egyptian territory, with a lack of vegetation cover. The low surface albedo of igneous and limestone rocks may explain the remarkable overestimation of daytime temperature in these regions, compared to the bright formations of higher surface albedo (i.e., sandy deserts and quaternary rocks). Overall, recalling the limited coverage of meteorological stations in Egypt, this study demonstrates that LST obtained from the MODIS product can be trustworthily employed as a surrogate for or a supplementary source to near-surface measurements, particularly for minimum air temperature. On the other hand, some bias correction techniques should be applied to daytime LSTs. In general, the fine space-based climatic information provided by MODIS LST can be used for a detailed spatial...