Potential of Satellite Spectral Resolution Vegetation Indices for Estimation of Canopy Chlorophyll Content of Field Crops: Mitigating Effects of Leaf Angle Distribution

Xiaochen Zou (Corresponding Author), Jun Jin, Matti Mõttus

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review

4 Citations (Scopus)
36 Downloads (Pure)

Abstract

Accurate estimation of canopy chlorophyll content (CCC) is critically important for agricultural production management. However, vegetation indices derived from canopy reflectance are influenced by canopy structure, which limits their application across species and seasonality. For horizontally homogenous canopies such as field crops, LAI and leaf inclination angle distribution or leaf mean tilt angle (MTA) are two biophysical characteristics determining canopy structure. Since CCC is relevant to LAI, MTA is the only structural parameter affecting the correlation between CCC and vegetation indices. To date, there are few vegetation indices designed to minimize MTA effects for CCC estimation. Herein, in this study, CCC-sensitive and MTA-insensitive satellite broadband vegetation indices are developed for crop canopy chlorophyll content estimation. The most efficient broadband vegetation indices for four satellite sensors (Sentinel-2, RapidEye, WorldView-2 and GaoFen-6) with red edge channels were identified (in the context of various vegetation index types) using simulated satellite broadband reflectance based on field measurements and validated with PROSAIL model simulations. The results indicate that developed vegetation indices present strong correlations with CCC and weak correlations with MTA, with overall R2 of 0.76–0.80 and 0.84–0.95 for CCC and R2 of 0.00 and 0.00–0.04 in the field measured data and model simulations, respectively. The best vegetation indices identified in this study are the soil-adjusted index type index SAI (B6, B7) for Sentinel-2, Verrelts’s three-band spectral index type index BSI-V (NIR1, Red, Red Edge) for WorldView-2, Tian’s three-band spectral index type index BSI-T (Red Edge, Green, NIR) for RapidEye and difference index type index DI (B6, B4) for GaoFen-6. The identified indices can potentially be used for crop CCC estimation across species and seasonality. However, real satellite datasets and more crop species need to be tested in further studies.

Original languageEnglish
Article number1234
Number of pages22
JournalRemote Sensing
Volume15
Issue number5
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Mar 2023
MoE publication typeA1 Journal article-refereed

Keywords

  • broadband vegetation indices
  • chlorophyll content
  • GaoFen-6
  • leaf angle distribution
  • RapidEye
  • Sentinel-2
  • WorldView-2

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