The ability to detect and quantify changes in the Earth's environment depends on satellites sensors that can provide calibrated, consistent measurements of Earth's surface features through time. A critical step in this process is to put image data from subsequent generations of sensors onto a common radiometric scale. To evaluate Landsat-5 (L5) Thematic Mapper's (TM) utility in this role, image pairs from the L5 TM and Landsat-7 (L7) Enhanced Thematic Mapper Plus (ETM+) sensors were compared. This approach involves comparison of surface observations based on image statistics from large common areas observed eight days apart by the two sensors. The results indicate a significant improvement in the consistency of L5 TM data with respect to L7 ETM+ data, achieved using a revised Look-Up-Table (LUT) procedure as opposed to the historical Internal Calibrator (IC) procedure previously used in the L5 TM product generation system. The average percent difference in reflectance estimates obtained from the L5 TM agree with those from the L7 ETM+ in the Visible and Near Infrared (VNIR) bands to within four percent and in the Short Wave Infrared (SWIR) bands to within six percent.
Additional Publication Details
Improvement in absolute calibration accuracy of Landsat-5 TM with Landsat-7 ETM+ data