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Estimating Forest Stand Height in Savannakhet, Lao PDR Using InSAR and Backscatter Methods with L-Band SAR Data

Parache, Helen Blue and Mayer, Timothy and Herndon, Kelsey E. and Flores-Anderson, Africa Ixmucane and Lei, Yang and Nguyen, Quyen and Kunlamai, Thannarot and Griffin, Robert (2021) Estimating Forest Stand Height in Savannakhet, Lao PDR Using InSAR and Backscatter Methods with L-Band SAR Data. Remote Sensing, 13 (22). Art. No. 4516. ISSN 2072-4292. doi:10.3390/rs13224516.

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Forest stand height (FSH), or average canopy height, serves as an important indicator for forest monitoring. The information provided about above-ground biomass for greenhouse gas emissions reporting and estimating carbon storage is relevant for reporting for Reducing Emissions from Deforestation and Forest Degradation (REDD+). A novel forest height estimation method utilizing a fusion of backscatter and Interferometric Synthetic Aperture Radar (InSAR) data from JAXA’s Advanced Land Observing Satellite Phased Array type L-band Synthetic Aperture Radar (ALOS PALSAR) is applied to a use case in Savannakhet, Lao. Compared with LiDAR, the estimated height from the fusion method had an RMSE of 4.90 m and an R² of 0.26. These results are comparable to previous studies using SAR estimation techniques. Despite limitations of data quality and quantity, the Savannakhet, Lao use case demonstrates the applicability of these techniques utilizing L-band SAR data for estimating FSH in tropical forests and can be used as a springboard for use of L-band data from the future NASA-ISRO SAR (NISAR) mission.

Item Type:Article
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URLURL TypeDescription ItemScripts and data
Flores-Anderson, Africa Ixmucane0000-0002-2579-3006
Lei, Yang0000-0002-8377-1980
Griffin, Robert0000-0001-5665-700X
Additional Information:© 2021 by the authors. Licensee MDPI, Basel, Switzerland. This article is an open access article distributed under the terms and conditions of the Creative Commons Attribution (CC BY) license ( Received: 31 August 2021; Accepted: 29 October 2021; Published: 10 November 2021. The authors would like to thank Rajesh Thapa, SERVIR-Mekong and SilvaCarbon for support in training and data acquisition. This research was funded by the joint U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) and National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) initiative SERVIR and particularly through the NASA Applied Sciences Capacity Building Program, NASA Cooperative Agreement NNM11AA01A. Author Contributions: Conceptualization, H.B.P., T.M., A.I.F.-A. and K.E.H.; methodology, H.B.P., T.M., K.E.H. and Y.L.; software, Y.L., H.B.P. and T.K.; validation, H.B.P.; formal analysis, H.B.P.; investigation, H.B.P.; data curation, H.B.P.; writing—original draft preparation, H.B.P.; writing—review and editing, T.M., K.E.H., Y.L., R.G., A.I.F.-A., Q.N. and T.K.; visualization, H.B.P. All authors have read and agreed to the published version of the manuscript. The authors declare no conflict of interest. The funders had no role in the design of the study; in the collection, analyses, or interpretation of data; in the writing of the manuscript, or in the decision to publish the results.
Funding AgencyGrant Number
U.S. Agency for International DevelopmentUNSPECIFIED
Subject Keywords:interferometry; backscatter; MRV; REDD+; ALOS PALSAR; SAR; forest monitoring; Lao
Issue or Number:22
Record Number:CaltechAUTHORS:20211123-160623771
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Official Citation:Parache, H.B.; Mayer, T.; Herndon, K.E.; Flores-Anderson, A.I.; Lei, Y.; Nguyen, Q.; Kunlamai, T.; Griffin, R. Estimating Forest Stand Height in Savannakhet, Lao PDR Using InSAR and Backscatter Methods with L-Band SAR Data. Remote Sens. 2021, 13, 4516.
Usage Policy:No commercial reproduction, distribution, display or performance rights in this work are provided.
ID Code:111999
Deposited By: Tony Diaz
Deposited On:23 Nov 2021 16:30
Last Modified:23 Nov 2021 16:30

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