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Proceedings Paper

Measuring forest canopy height using ICESat/GLAS data for applying to Japanese spaceborne lidar mission
Author(s): Masato Hayashi; Nobuko Saigusa; Hiroyuki Oguma; Yoshiki Yamagata; Gen Takao; Haruo Sawada; Kohei Mizutani; Nobuo Sugimoto; Kazuhiro Asai
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Paper Abstract

We developed a methodology to estimate the canopy height from the ICESat/GLAS waveform for the purpose of contributing to the design of the Japanese spaceborne LiDAR mission; iss-jem LiDAR for Observation of Vegetation Environment (i-LOVE). We adopted an estimation method using a terrain index, which indicates the steepness of ground surface, to accurately estimate the canopy height in sloped areas. The study area is Hokkaido Island. We conducted a ground survey and collected airborne LiDAR data to use as the ground truth for the canopy height. We then developed some models to estimate the canopy height from a GLAS waveform. As a result, the estimation accuracy decreased in steep sloped areas where the terrain index exceeded 15 m. To reduce the influence of this effect, the estimation equation was separated for a gentle slope (terrain index ≤ 15 m) and a steep slope (terrain index < 15 m). In this case, RMSE was 3 to 5 m. These findings indicated that an accurate estimation method would be ensured by using a footprint of less than 15 m of terrain index for the i-LOVE mission. On the assumption of a forested area located primarily at less than a 30° surface slope on a global scale, it is recommended that the diameter of the i-LOVE footprint should be less than 25 m. i- LOVE is planned to transmit four laser pulses arranged at 2×2 simultaneously. This characteristic of i-LOVE, which does not require DEM, makes it possible to calculate the terrain index accurately and has a large advantage for accurately estimating the canopy height on a global scale.

Paper Details

Date Published: 19 November 2012
PDF: 8 pages
Proc. SPIE 8526, Lidar Remote Sensing for Environmental Monitoring XIII, 85260M (19 November 2012); doi: 10.1117/12.981583
Show Author Affiliations
Masato Hayashi, National Institute for Environmental Studies (Japan)
Nobuko Saigusa, National Institute for Environmental Studies (Japan)
Hiroyuki Oguma, National Institute for Environmental Studies (Japan)
Yoshiki Yamagata, National Institute for Environmental Studies (Japan)
Gen Takao, Forestry and Forest Products Research Institute (Japan)
Haruo Sawada, The Univ. of Tokyo (Japan)
Kohei Mizutani, National Institute of Information and Communications Technology (Japan)
Nobuo Sugimoto, National Institute for Environmental Studies (Japan)
Kazuhiro Asai, Tohoku Institute of Technology (Japan)

Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 8526:
Lidar Remote Sensing for Environmental Monitoring XIII
Kazuhiro Asai; Nobuo Sugimoto; Upendra N. Singh; Achuthan Jayaraman; Jianping Huang; Detlef Mueller, Editor(s)

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