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Proceedings Paper

Polarimetric, two-color, photon-counting laser altimeter measurements of forest canopy structure
Author(s): David J. Harding; Philip W. Dabney; Susan Valett
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Paper Abstract

Laser altimeter measurements of forest stands with distinct structures and compositions have been acquired at 532 nm (green) and 1064 nm (near-infrared) wavelengths and parallel and perpendicular polarization states using the Slope Imaging Multi-polarization Photon Counting Lidar (SIMPL). The micropulse, single photon ranging measurement approach employed by SIMPL provides canopy structure measurements with high vertical and spatial resolution. Using a height distribution analysis method adapted from conventional, 1064 nm, full-waveform lidar remote sensing, the sensitivity of two parameters commonly used for above-ground biomass estimation are compared as a function of wavelength. The results for the height of median energy (HOME) and canopy cover are for the most part very similar, indicating biomass estimations using lidars operating at green and near-infrared wavelengths will yield comparable estimates. The expected detection of increasing depolarization with depth into the canopies due to volume multiplescattering was not observed, possibly due to the small laser footprint and the small detector field of view used in the SIMPL instrument. The results of this work provide pathfinder information for NASA's ICESat-2 mission that will employ a 532 nm, micropulse, photon counting laser altimeter.

Paper Details

Date Published: 24 October 2011
PDF: 10 pages
Proc. SPIE 8286, International Symposium on Lidar and Radar Mapping 2011: Technologies and Applications, 828629 (24 October 2011); doi: 10.1117/12.913960
Show Author Affiliations
David J. Harding, NASA Goddard Space Flight Ctr. (United States)
Philip W. Dabney, NASA Goddard Space Flight Ctr. (United States)
Susan Valett, NASA Goddard Space Flight Ctr. (United States)


Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 8286:
International Symposium on Lidar and Radar Mapping 2011: Technologies and Applications
Jonathan Li, Editor(s)

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