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Journal of Applied Remote Sensing • Open Access

Remote-sensing application for facilitating land resource assessment and monitoring for utility-scale solar energy development
Author(s): Yuki Hamada; Mark A. Grippo

Paper Abstract

A monitoring plan that incorporates regional datasets and integrates cost-effective data collection methods is necessary to sustain the long-term environmental monitoring of utility-scale solar energy developments in expansive, environmentally sensitive desert regions. An image processing routine using very high spatial resolution (VHSR; i.e., 15 cm) multispectral imagery collected in November 2012 and January 2014 was developed to characterize ephemeral streams, vegetation, and land surfaces in the southwestern United States, where increased utility-scale solar development is anticipated. In addition to information about desert landscapes, the methodology integrates existing spectral indices and transformations (e.g., visible atmospherically resistant index and principal components); a new index called the erosion resistance index (ERI); and digital terrain and surface models, all of which were derived from a common VHSR image. The methodology identified fine-scale ephemeral streams at greater detail than does the National Hydrography Dataset, and it accurately estimated the distribution of vegetation and the fractional cover of various surface types. The ERI classified surface types that have a range of erosive potentials. The remote-sensing methodology could ultimately reduce uncertainty and monitoring costs for all stakeholders by providing a cost-effective monitoring approach that accurately characterizes the land resources at potential development sites.

Paper Details

Date Published: 23 June 2015
PDF: 17 pages
J. Appl. Rem. Sens. 9(1) 097694 doi: 10.1117/1.JRS.9.097694
Published in: Journal of Applied Remote Sensing Volume 9, Issue 1
Show Author Affiliations
Yuki Hamada, Argonne National Lab. (United States)
Mark A. Grippo, Argonne National Lab. (United States)

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