Directional reflectance factor distributions for cover types of Northern Africa

D.S. Kimes, W.W. Newcomb, C.J. Tucker, I.S. Zonneveld, W. van Wijngaarden, J. de Leeuw, G.F. Epema

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Directional reflectance factors that spanned the entire exitance hemisphere were collected on the ground throughout the morning period for common cover types in Tunisia, Africa. NOAA 7/8 AVHRR bands 1 (0.58–0.68 μm) and 2 (0.73–1.1 μm) were used in data collection. The cover types reported were a plowed field, annual grassland, steppe grassland, hard wheat, salt plain, and irrigated wheat. Several of these cover types had geometric structures that are extreme as compared to those reported in the literature. Comparisons were made between the dynamics of the observed reflectance distributions and those reported in the literature. It was found that the dynamics of the measured data could be explained by a combination of soil and vegetation scattering components. The data and analysis further validated physical principles that cause the reflectance distribution dynamics as proposed by field and simulation studies in the literature. Finally, the normalized difference transformation [(Band 2 − Band 1)/(Band 1 + Band 2)], which is useful in monitoring vegetation cover, generally decreased the variation in signal with changing view angle. However, several exceptions were noted.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1-19
JournalRemote sensing of environment
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 1985


  • NRS
  • ADLIB-ART-1767


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