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Bocco, M; Ovando, G; Sayago, S; Willington, E; Heredia, S (2012). Estimating soybean ground cover from satellite images using neural-networks models. INTERNATIONAL JOURNAL OF REMOTE SENSING, 33(6), 1717-1728.

The ground cover is a necessary parameter for agronomic and environmental applications. In Argentina, soybean (Glycine max (L.) Merill) is the most important crop; therefore it is necessary to determine its amount and configuration. In this work, neural-network (NN) models were developed to calculate soybean percentage ground cover (fractional vegetation cover, fCover) and to compare the accuracy of the estimate from Moderate-Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) and Landsat satellites data. The NN design included spectral values of the red and near-infrared (NIR) bands as input variables and one neuron output, which expressed the estimated coverage. Data of fCover were acquired throughout the growing season in the central plains of Cordoba (Argentina); they were used for training and validating the networks. The results show that the NNs are an appropriate methodology for estimating the temporal evolution of soybean coverage fraction from MODIS and Landsat images, with coefficients of determination (R-2) equal to 0.90 and 0.91, respectively.



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