Miura, T, Huete, A, Yoshioka, H (2006). An empirical investigation of cross-sensor relationships of NDVI and red/near-infrared reflectance using EO-1 hyperion data. REMOTE SENSING OF ENVIRONMENT, 100(2), 223-236.

Long term observations of global vegetation from multiple satellites require much effort to ensure continuity and compatibility due to differences in sensor characteristics and product generation algorithms. In this study, we focused on the bandpass filter differences and empirically investigated cross-sensor relationships of the normalized difference vegetation index (NDVI) and reflectance. The specific objectives were: 1) to understand the systematic trends in cross-sensor relationships of the NDVI and reflectance as a function of spectral bandpasses, 2) to examine/ identify the relative importance of the spectral features (i.e., the green peak, red edge, and leaf liquid water absorption regions) in and the mechanism(s) of causing the observed systematic trends, and 3) to evaluate the performance of several empirical cross-calibration methods in modeling the observed systematic trends. A Level 1A Hyperion hyperspectral image acquired over a tropical forest-savanna transitional region in Brazil was processed to simulate atmospherically corrected reflectances and NDVI for various bandpasses, including Terra Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS), NOAA-14 Advanced Very High Resolution Radiometer (AVERR), and Landsat-7 Enhanced Thematic Mapper Plus (ETM+). Data were extracted from various land cover types typically found in tropical forest and savanna biomes and used for analyses. Both NDVI and reflectance relationships among the sensors were neither linear nor unique and were found to exhibit complex patterns and bandpass dependencies. The reflectance relationships showed strong land cover dependencies. The NDVI relationships, in contrast, did not show land cover dependencies, but resulted in nonlinear forms. From sensitivity analyses, the green peak (similar to 550 nm) and red-NIR transitional (680-780 nm) features were identified as the key factors in producing the observed land cover dependencies and nonlinearity in cross-sensor relationships. In particular, differences in the extents to which the red and/or NIR bandpasses included these features significantly influenced the forms and degrees of nonlinearity in the relationships. Translation of MODIS NDVI to AVHRR-like NDVI using a weighted average of MODIS green and red bands performed very poorly, resulting in no reduction of overall discrepancy between MODIS and AVHRR NDVI. Cross-calibration of NDVI and reflectance using NDVI-based quadratic functions performed well, reducing their differences to +/- .025 units for the NDVI and +/- .01 units for the reflectances; however, many of the translation results suffered from bias errors. The present results suggest that distinct translation equations and coefficients need to be developed for every sensor pairs and that land cover-dependency need to be explicitly accounted for to reduce bias errors. (c) 2005 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.