A Multi-temporal Analysis Approach for Land Cover Mapping in Support of Nuclear Incident Response

Algorithms and Technologies for Multispectral, Hyperspectral, and Ultraspectral Imagery XVIII, 23 April 2012, Baltimore, Maryland, USA

Shagan Sah, Jan A. N. van Aardt, Donald M. McKeown, and David W. Messinger

“Remote sensing can be used to rapidly generate land use maps for assisting emergency response personnel with resource deployment decisions and impact assessments. In this study we focus on constructing accurate land cover maps to map the impacted area in the case of a nuclear material release. The proposed methodology involves integration of results from two different approaches to increase classification accuracy. The data used included RapidEye scenes over Nine Mile Point Nuclear Power Station (Oswego, NY). The first step was building a coarse-scale land cover map from freely available, high temporal resolution, MODIS data using a time-series approach. In the case of a nuclear accident, high spatial resolution commercial satellites such as RapidEye or IKONOS can acquire images of the affected area. Land use maps from the two image sources were integrated using a probability-based approach. Classification results were obtained for four land classes – forest, urban, water and vegetation – using Euclidean and Mahalanobis distances as metrics. Despite the coarse resolution of MODIS pixels, acceptable accuracies were obtained using time series features. The overall accuracies using the fusion based approach were in the neighborhood of 80%, when compared with GIS data sets from New York State. The classifications were augmented using this fused approach, with few supplementary advantages such as correction for cloud cover and independence from time of year. We concluded that this method would generate highly accurate land maps, using coarse spatial resolution time series satellite imagery and a single date, high spatial resolution, multi-spectral image.”