Summary Results from:

An integrated method for validating long-term leaf area index products using global networks of site-based measurements
As they relate to the validation of MOD15

Authors: Baodong Xu, Jing Li, Taejin Park, Qinhuo Liu, Yelu Zeng, Gaofei Yin, Jing Zhao, Weiliang Fan, Le Yang, Yuri Knyazikhin, Ranga B Myneni

Source: Remote Sensing of Environment, 209, pp.134-151

Link to: Access Publication


Long-term ground LAI measurements from the global networks of sites (e.g. FLUXNET) have emerged as a promising data source to validate remotely sensed global LAI product time-series. However, the spatial scale-mismatch issue between site and satellite observations hampers the use of such invaluable ground measurements in validation practice. Here, we propose an approach (Grading and Upscaling of Ground Measurements, GUGM) that integrates a spatial representativeness grading criterion and a spatial upscaling strategy to resolve this scale-mismatch issue and maximize the utility of time-series of site-based LAI measurements. The performance of GUGM was carefully evaluated by comparing this method to both benchmark LAI and other widely used conventional approaches. The uncertainty of three global LAI products (i.e. MODIS, GLASS and GEOV1) was also assessed based on the LAI time-series validation dataset derived from GUGM. Considering all the evaluation results together, this study suggests that the proposed GUGM approach can significantly reduce the uncertainty from spatial scale mismatch and increase the size of the available validation dataset. In particular, the proposed approach outperformed other widely used approaches in these two respects. Furthermore, GUGM was successfully implemented to validate global LAI products in various ways with advantaging frequent time-series validation dataset. The validation results of the global LAI products show that GLASS has the lowest uncertainty, followed by GEOV1 and MODIS for the overall biome types. However, MODIS provides more consistent uncertainties across different years than GLASS and GEOV1. We believe that GUGM enables us to better understand the structure of LAI product uncertainties and their evolution across seasonal or annual contexts. In turn, this method can provide fundamental information for further LAI algorithm improvements and the broad application of LAI product time-series.