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5 October 2020 Lidar-based estimates of aboveground biomass through ground, aerial, and satellite observation: a case study in a Mediterranean forest
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Abstract

Light detection and ranging (Lidar) is considered the most advanced technology to assess forest aboveground biomass (AGB). Currently, this technology is shared by different sensors ranging from ground [terrestrial laser scanning (TLS)], airborne [aerial laser scanning (ALS)] up to spaceborne ones, which entail different spatial scales. However, few studies tested the simultaneous and combined use of Lidar to estimate AGB, linking ground measurements up to satellite observations. To fill this gap, we performed a study in two Mediterranean forest types [i.e., mountainous beech (Fagus sylvatica) and black pine (Pinus nigra subsp. laricio)] with contrasting structures (i.e., broadleaf versus needleleaf forests), where field inventory, TLS, ALS, and the recent spaceborne Global Ecosystem Dynamics Investigation (GEDI) data were simultaneously acquired. A three-step procedure was followed, which involved (i) the validation of AGB estimates obtained from TLS against reference values obtained from conventional field inventory; (ii) the calibration and validation of AGB estimates derived from ALS against TLS measurements, and (iii) the calibration and validation of AGB estimates derived from GEDI against mapped AGB values obtained from ALS. Our main results indicated that TLS provides consistent measurements of AGB as compared with field measurements (R2 ranged between 0.6 and 0.9 and root-mean-square error ranged between 29% and 49%), indicating its potential as ground reference for airborne Lidar observations. The combined availability of ground, airborne, and spaceborne observations is suitable to link ground measurements up to satellite observations. Differences in Lidar performance between needleleaf and broadleaf forests are also considered and discussed.

© 2020 Society of Photo-Optical Instrumentation Engineers (SPIE) 1931-3195/2020/$28.00 © 2020 SPIE
Nicola Puletti, Mirko Grotti, Carlotta Ferrara, and Francesco Chianucci "Lidar-based estimates of aboveground biomass through ground, aerial, and satellite observation: a case study in a Mediterranean forest," Journal of Applied Remote Sensing 14(4), 044501 (5 October 2020). https://doi.org/10.1117/1.JRS.14.044501
Received: 13 June 2020; Accepted: 15 September 2020; Published: 5 October 2020
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