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Journal of Applied Remote Sensing • Open Access

Mapping hardwood forests through a two-stage unsupervised classification by integrating Landsat Thematic Mapper and forest inventory data
Author(s): Gang Shao; Benjamin P. Pauli; G. Scott Haulton; Patrick A. Zollner; Guofan Shao

Paper Abstract

Sound forest management requires accurate forest maps at an appropriate scale. Forest cover data developed at a national scale may be too coarse for forest management at a local level. We demonstrated a two-stage unsupervised classification, integrating Continuous Forest Inventory (CFI) data and Landsat imageries, to classify forest types for Indiana State Forests (ISF) and 8-km surrounding areas. In the first stage, an automatic unsupervised classification assisted by CFI data was applied in ISF. In the second stage, the resultant forest cover information from the first stage was used to expand the classification area into the 8-km surrounding areas. Splitting the classification procedure into two stages made it possible to expand the classification area beyond the coverage of the CFI data. This data-aided unsupervised classification approach increased the repeatability of forest mapping. The resultant map contains five forest types: conifer, conifer-hardwood, maple, mixed hardwood, and oak-hickory forests. The overall accuracy was 81.9%, and the total disagreement was 0.176. The accuracies of conifer, conifer-hardwood, maple, mixed hardwood, and oak-hickory forests were 81.6, 63.4, 75.0, 33.3, and 90%, respectively. This forest mapping technique is suitable for automated mapping of forest areas where extensive plot data are available.

Paper Details

Date Published: 15 October 2014
PDF: 14 pages
J. Appl. Rem. Sens. 8(1) 083546 doi: 10.1117/1.JRS.8.083546
Published in: Journal of Applied Remote Sensing Volume 8, Issue 1
Show Author Affiliations
Gang Shao, Purdue Univ. (United States)
Benjamin P. Pauli, Purdue Univ. (United States)
G. Scott Haulton, Indiana Dept. of Natural Resources (United States)
Patrick A. Zollner, Purdue Univ. (United States)
Guofan Shao, Purdue Univ. (United States)

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