ISSN 2070-7401 (Print), ISSN 2411-0280 (Online)
Sovremennye problemy distantsionnogo zondirovaniya Zemli iz kosmosa


Sovremennye problemy distantsionnogo zondirovaniya Zemli iz kosmosa, 2021, Vol. 18, No. 4, pp. 92-101

Spectral differences in vegetation cover characteristics of tundra communities by Landsat sensors

V.V. Елсаков 1 
1 Institute of Biology, Komi Science Centre UrB RAS, Syktyvkar, Russia
Accepted: 21.06.2021
DOI: 10.21046/2070-7401-2021-18-4-92-101
A comparison of the red and near-infrared spectral values and NDVI index of Landsat sensors (TM/ETM+/OLI) obtained on adjacent acquisition dates is performed. The TM and OLI images comparison of which was achieved via ETM+ had different overlapping periods. The imaging interval in the compiled pairs of sensors was 1 day. The image pairs were analyzed over two model areas localized in the eastern part of the shrub-dominated Bolshezemelskaya tundra. Significant changes in the NDVI index were not observed for the time interval considered 2009–2020. Phytocenoses classes with absence (65.1 %) or weak positive (28.5 %) changes prevailed in order of the average rate of NDVI index changes. Spectral brightness values for tundra phytocenoses shown insignificant deviations despite the significant difference in length of NIR bands for OLI (0.85–0.88 microns) and ETM+ (0.77–0.90 microns) sensors. The offsets of spectral values for different sites and survey years using the relative percentage difference (RPD, %) criterion had similar dependencies of the deviations for the vegetation cover classes of the analyzed pairs. Sensors ETM+ compared to TM systematically overestimated NIR (1.9 %) and NDVI (7.4 %) and underestimated RED (2.6 %). A slight overestimation for the OLI radiometer compared to the ETM+ for the NIR channel (1.7 %) and NDVI (4.5 %) and an underestimation for RED (2.3 %) was noted. The maximum differences in the NDVI index (averaging up to 11.9 % for a pair of images) were observed for the most time-dispersed OLI and TM sensor surveys. This has demonstrated a possible source of error in interannual comparisons, the measurement error could numerically exceed the variability of vegetation productivity indices caused by interannual weather patterns.
Keywords: tundra vegetation communities, comparison of Landsat, TM, ETM+ and OLI sensors, seasonal and inter-annual vegetation changes
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