High-Temporal-Resolution Forest Growth Monitoring Based on Segmented 3D Canopy Surface from UAV Aerial Photogrammetry

Wenbo Zhang, Feng Gao, Nan Jiang, Chu Zhang, Yanchao Zhang
2022 Drones  
Traditional forest monitoring has been mainly performed with images or orthoimages from aircraft or satellites. In recent years, the availability of high-resolution 3D data has made it possible to obtain accurate information on canopy size, which has made the topic of canopy 3D growth monitoring timely. In this paper, forest growth pattern was studied based on a canopy point cloud (PC) reconstructed from UAV aerial photogrammetry at a daily interval for a year. Growth curves were acquired based
more » ... on the canopy 3D area (3DA) calculated from a triangulated 3D mesh. Methods for canopy coverage area (CA), forest coverage rate, and leaf area index (LAI) were proposed and tested. Three spectral vegetation indices, excess green index (ExG), a combination of green indices (COM), and an excess red union excess green index (ExGUExR) were used for the segmentation of trees. The results showed that (1) vegetation areas extracted by ExGUExR were more complete than those extracted by the other two indices; (2) logistic fitting of 3DA and CA yielded S-shaped growth curves, all with correlation R2 > 0.92; (3) 3DA curves represented the growth pattern more accurately than CA curves. Measurement errors and applicability are discussed. In summary, the UAV aerial photogrammetry method was successfully used for daily monitoring and annual growth trend description.
doi:10.3390/drones6070158 fatcat:l4uqqp5lcjec3mwzbuaba5xhzu