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Satellite remote sensing data constitute a significant potential source of information on the environment, provided they can be adequately interpreted. Vegetation indices, a subset of the class of spectral indices, represent one of the most commonly used approaches to analyse data in the optical domain. An optimal spectral index is very sensitive to the desired information and as insensitive as possible to perturbing factors. Since both the desired signal and the perturbing factors vary spectrally, and since the instruments themselves only provide data for particular spectral bands, optimal indices should be designed for specific applications and particular instruments. A rational approach to the design of an optimal index has been developed to estimate vegetation properties on the basis of the red reflectances and near-infrared reflectances of the advanced very high resolution radiometer (AVHRR) instrument, taking into account the perturbing effects of soil brightness changes, atmospheric absorption and scattering. The Global Environment Monitoring Index (GEMI) is proposed as an alternative to the Normalized Difference Vegetation Index (NDVI) for global applications. The techniques are generally applicable to any multispectral sensor and application.

Additional information

Authors: VERSTRAETE M M, JRC Ispra (IT);PINTY B, JRC Ispra (IT)
Bibliographic Reference: Article: IEEE Transactions on Geoscience and Remote Sensing
Record Number: 199610236 / Last updated on: 1996-03-18
Original language: en
Available languages: en
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