Retrieving leaf area index for coniferous forest in Xingguo County, China with Landsat ETM+ images
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Spatial distributions of the leaf area index (LAI) needed for carbon cycle modeling in Xingguo County, China were estimated based on correlations between the field-measurements and vegetation indices (VIs). After making geometric and atmospheric corrections to two Landsat ETM+ images, one in January 2000 and the other in May 2003, three VIs (SR, NDVI, and RSR) were derived, and their separate correlations with ground LAI measurements were established. The correlation with RSR was the highest among the three VIs. The retrieved LAI values for January 2000 were lower than those for May 2003 because of a small seasonal variation in the coniferous forests (predominantly masson pine) and the decrease in the understorey vegetation during winter.
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