Tropical Forest Top Height by GEDI: From Sparse Coverage to Continuous Data - INRAE - Institut national de recherche pour l’agriculture, l’alimentation et l’environnement Access content directly
Journal Articles Remote Sensing Year : 2023

Tropical Forest Top Height by GEDI: From Sparse Coverage to Continuous Data


Estimating consistent large-scale tropical forest height using remote sensing is essential for understanding forest-related carbon cycles. The Global Ecosystem Dynamics Investigation (GEDI) light detection and ranging (LiDAR) instrument employed on the International Space Station has collected unique vegetation structure data since April 2019. Our study shows the potential value of using remote-sensing (RS) data (i.e., optical Sentinel-2, radar Sentinel-1, and radar PALSAR-2) to extrapolate GEDI footprint-level forest canopy height model (CHM) measurements. We show that selected RS features can estimate vegetation heights with high precision by analyzing RS data, spaceborne GEDI LiDAR, and airborne LiDAR at four tropical forest sites in South America and Africa. We found that the GEDI relative height (RH) metric is the best at 98% (RH98), filtered by full-power shots with a sensitivity greater than 98%. We found that the optical Sentinel-2 indices are dominant with respect to radar from 77 possible features. We proposed the nine essential optical Sentinel-2 and the radar cross-polarization HV PALSAR-2 features in CHM estimation. Using only ten optimal indices for the regression problems can avoid unimportant features and reduce the computational effort. The predicted CHM was compared to the available airborne LiDAR data, resulting in an error of around 5 m. Finally, we tested cross-validation error values between South America and Africa, including around 40% from validation data in training to obtain a similar performance. We recommend that GEDI data be extracted from all continents to maintain consistent performance on a global scale. Combining GEDI and RS data is a promising method to advance our capability in mapping CHM values.
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hal-04050230 , version 1 (29-03-2023)





Yen-Nhi Ngo, Dinh Ho Tong Minh, Nicolas Baghdadi, Ibrahim Fayad. Tropical Forest Top Height by GEDI: From Sparse Coverage to Continuous Data. Remote Sensing, 2023, 15 (4), pp.975. ⟨10.3390/rs15040975⟩. ⟨hal-04050230⟩
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