Creating high-resolution bare-earth digital elevation models (DEMs) from stereo imagery in an area of densely vegetated deciduous forest using combinations of procedures designed for lidar point cloud filtering

GIScience and Remote Sensing
By: , and 

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Abstract

For areas of the world that do not have access to lidar, fine-scale digital elevation models (DEMs) can be photogrammetrically created using globally available high-spatial resolution stereo satellite imagery. The resultant DEM is best termed a digital surface model (DSM) because it includes heights of surface features. In densely vegetated conditions, this inclusion can limit its usefulness in applications requiring a bare-earth DEM. This study explores the use of techniques designed for filtering lidar point clouds to mitigate the elevation artifacts caused by above ground features, within the context of a case study of Prince William Forest Park, Virginia, USA. The influences of land cover and leaf-on vs. leaf-off conditions are investigated, and the accuracy of the raw photogrammetric DSM extracted from leaf-on imagery was between that of a lidar bare-earth DEM and the Shuttle Radar Topography Mission DEM. Although the filtered leaf-on photogrammetric DEM retains some artifacts of the vegetation canopy and may not be useful for some applications, filtering procedures significantly improved the accuracy of the modeled terrain. The accuracy of the DSM extracted in leaf-off conditions was comparable in most areas to the lidar bare-earth DEM and filtering procedures resulted in accuracy comparable of that to the lidar DEM.

Additional publication details

Publication type Article
Publication Subtype Journal Article
Title Creating high-resolution bare-earth digital elevation models (DEMs) from stereo imagery in an area of densely vegetated deciduous forest using combinations of procedures designed for lidar point cloud filtering
Series title GIScience and Remote Sensing
DOI 10.1080/15481603.2017.1295514
Volume 54
Issue 4
Year Published 2017
Language English
Publisher Taylor & Francis Online
Contributing office(s) Eastern Geology and Paleoclimate Science Center
Description 21 p.
First page 552
Last page 572