2019-05-20Zeitschriftenartikel DOI: 10.3390/rs11101197
Forest Stand Species Mapping Using the Sentinel-2 Time Series
Accurate information regarding forest tree species composition is useful for a wide range of applications, both for forest management and scientific research. Remote sensing is an efficient tool for collecting spatially explicit information on forest attributes. With the launch of the Sentinel-2 mission, new opportunities have arisen for mapping tree species owing to its spatial, spectral, and temporal resolution. The short revisit cycle (five days) is crucial in vegetation mapping because of the reflectance changes caused by phenological phases. In our study, we evaluated the utility of the Sentinel-2 time series for mapping tree species in the complex, mixed forests of the Polish Carpathian Mountains. We mapped the following nine tree species: common beech, silver birch, common hornbeam, silver fir, sycamore maple, European larch, grey alder, Scots pine, and Norway spruce. We used the Sentinel-2 time series from 2018, with 18 images included in the study. Different combinations of Sentinel-2 imagery were selected based on mean decrease accuracy (MDA) and mean decrease Gini (MDG) measures, in addition to temporal phonological pattern analysis. Tree species discrimination was performed using the Random Forest classification algorithm. Our results showed that the use of the Sentinel-2 time series instead of single date imagery significantly improved forest tree species mapping, by approximately 5–10% of overall accuracy. In particular, combining images from spring and autumn resulted in better species discrimination.
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