Forest Canopy LAI and Vertical FAVD Profile Inversion from Airborne Full-Waveform LiDAR Data Based on a Radiative Transfer Model

Han Ma, Jinling Song, Jindi Wang
2015 Remote Sensing  
Forest canopy leaf area index (LAI) is a critical variable for the modeling of climates and ecosystems over both regional and global scales. This paper proposes a physically based method to retrieve LAI and foliage area volume density (FAVD) profile directly from full-waveform Light Detection And Ranging (LiDAR) data using a radiative transfer (RT) model. First, a physical interaction model between LiDAR and a forest scene was built on the basis of radiative transfer theories. Next, FAVD
more » ... of each laser shot of full-waveform LiDAR was inverted using the physical model. In addition, the missing LiDAR data, caused by high-density forest and LiDAR system limitations, were filled in based on the inverted FAVD and the ancillary CHM data. Finally, LAI of the study area was retrieved from the inverted FAVD at a 10-m resolution. CHM derived LAI based on the Beer-Lambert law was compared with the LAI derived from full-waveform data. Also, we compared the results with the field measured LAI. The values of correlation coefficient r and RMSE of the estimated LAI were 0.73 and 0.67, respectively. The results indicate that full-waveform LiDAR data is a reliable data source and represent a useful tool for retrieving forest LAI. OPEN ACCESS Remote Sens. 2015, 7 1898
doi:10.3390/rs70201897 fatcat:kvvnuney6rgspetbndpu5rvjxe