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Proceedings Paper

Simulating the directional, spectral and textural properties of a large-scale scene at high resolution using a MODIS BRDF product
Author(s): Rajagopalan Rengarajan; Adam A. Goodenough; John R. Schott
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Paper Abstract

Many remote sensing applications rely on simulated scenes to perform complex interaction and sensitivity studies that are not possible with real-world scenes. These applications include the development and validation of new and existing algorithms, understanding of the sensor's performance prior to launch, and trade studies to determine ideal sensor configurations. The accuracy of these applications is dependent on the realism of the modeled scenes and sensors. The Digital Image and Remote Sensing Image Generation (DIRSIG) tool has been used extensively to model the complex spectral and spatial texture variation expected in large city-scale scenes and natural biomes. In the past, material properties that were used to represent targets in the simulated scenes were often assumed to be Lambertian in the absence of hand-measured directional data. However, this assumption presents a limitation for new algorithms that need to recognize the anisotropic behavior of targets. We have developed a new method to model and simulate large-scale high-resolution terrestrial scenes by combining bi-directional reflectance distribution function (BRDF) products from Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) data, high spatial resolution data, and hyperspectral data. The high spatial resolution data is used to separate materials and add textural variations to the scene, and the directional hemispherical reflectance from the hyperspectral data is used to adjust the magnitude of the MODIS BRDF. In this method, the shape of the BRDF is preserved since it changes very slowly, but its magnitude is varied based on the high resolution texture and hyperspectral data. In addition to the MODIS derived BRDF, target/class specific BRDF values or functions can also be applied to features of specific interest. The purpose of this paper is to discuss the techniques and the methodology used to model a forest region at a high resolution. The simulated scenes using this method for varying view angles show the expected variations in the reflectance due to the BRDF effects of the Harvard forest. The effectiveness of this technique to simulate real sensor data is evaluated by comparing the simulated data with the Landsat 8 Operational Land Image (OLI) data over the Harvard forest. Regions of interest were selected from the simulated and the real data for different targets and their Top-of-Atmospheric (TOA) radiance were compared. After adjusting for scaling correction due to the difference in atmospheric conditions between the simulated and the real data, the TOA radiance is found to agree within 5 % in the NIR band and 10 % in the visible bands for forest targets under similar illumination conditions. The technique presented in this paper can be extended for other biomes (e.g. desert regions and agricultural regions) by using the appropriate geographic regions. Since the entire scene is constructed in a simulated environment, parameters such as BRDF or its effects can be analyzed for general or target specific algorithm improvements. Also, the modeling and simulation techniques can be used as a baseline for the development and comparison of new sensor designs and to investigate the operational and environmental factors that affects the sensor constellations such as Sentinel and Landsat missions.

Paper Details

Date Published: 19 October 2016
PDF: 11 pages
Proc. SPIE 10000, Sensors, Systems, and Next-Generation Satellites XX, 100000Y (19 October 2016); doi: 10.1117/12.2240527
Show Author Affiliations
Rajagopalan Rengarajan, Rochester Institute of Technology (United States)
Adam A. Goodenough, Rochester Institute of Technology (United States)
John R. Schott, Rochester Institute of Technology (United States)

Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 10000:
Sensors, Systems, and Next-Generation Satellites XX
Roland Meynart; Steven P. Neeck; Toshiyoshi Kimura, Editor(s)

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