Heiskanen, J, Kivinen, S (2008). "Assessment of multispectral, -temporal and -angular MODIS data for tree cover mapping in the tundra-taiga transition zone". REMOTE SENSING OF ENVIRONMENT, 112(5), 2367-2380.
The latitudinal tree cover gradient is an important characteristic of the tundra-taiga transition zone stretching around the northern hemisphere. Accurately mapped continuous tree cover fields would enable the depiction of forest extent over this ecotone, which is sensitive to climate change, natural disturbances and human activities. The objective of this study was to assess the explanatory power of multispectral, -temporal and -angular MODIS data to estimate tree cover at the regional scale in northernmost Finland. The standard MODIS BRDF/Albedo (MOD43B) data products at approximately 1 km resolution were used. The tree cover was estimated using generalized linear models (GLM), which were calibrated and evaluated by high resolution biotope inventory data. The benefit of coupling the multispectral, -temporal and -angular variables was assessed by variation partitioning. The predicted tree cover fields were also used for the forest-non-forest classification over a larger region and compared with the forest extent of Finnish CORINE land cover 2000 data set. The results show that multitemporal and -angular variables can increase the accuracy of the tree cover estimates and mapping of the forest extent in comparison to the peak of the growing season nadir-view multispectral data. The season of the data acquisition also affect the model performance, the late-spring and early-summer data being superior to mid- and late-summer data. Although the pure effect of the multiangular variables i.e. the parameters of the MODIS BRDF model and selected multiangular indices were relatively small in the models, the inclusion of these data increased the accuracy of the tree cover estimates in the mires in comparison to the peak of the growing season nadir-view multispectral data and multitemporal variables. (C) 2007 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.