Spectral compatibility of the NDVI across VIIRS, MODIS, and AVHRR: An analysis of atmospheric effects using EO-1 hyperion

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Journal Article
IEEE Transactions on Geoscience and Remote Sensing, 2013, 51 (3), pp. 1349 - 1359
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We evaluated the cross-sensor compatibilities of the normalized difference vegetation index (NDVI) across the Visible/Infrared Imager/Radiometer Suite (VIIRS), Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS), and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA)-14 and NOAA-19 Advanced Very High Resolution Radiometer (AVHRR) (AVHRR/2 and AVHRR/3) bandpasses using a global set of Earth Observing One Hyperion hyperspectral data. Five levels of atmospheric correction were simulated to examine the impact of the atmosphere on intersensor NDVI compatibility. These were the uncorrected 'top-of-atmosphere'; Rayleigh (RAY); Rayleigh and ozone (RO); Rayleigh, ozone, and water vapor (ROW); and total atmosphere-corrected 'top-of-canopy (TOC)' reflectances. Among all possible sensor pairs examined, the highest compatibility was observed for VIIRS versus MODIS. Cross-sensor NDVI relationships between the two sensor bandpasses remained nearly the same throughout all levels of atmospheric correction. AVHRR/3-versus-AVHRR/2 NDVI relationships changed very little and also showed an equivalent level of compatibility to VIIRS versus MODIS across all levels of atmospheric correction although they were subject to systematic differences. Intersensor NDVI compatibilities of VIIRS and MODIS to AVHRR/2 and to AVHRR/3 were lower due primarily to the differential sensitivities of these sensors' near-infrared bands to the atmospheric water vapor effects. Comparisons of cross-sensor NDVI compatibilities where operational atmospheric correction schemes were assumed for each of the sensors suggest the need of VIIRS TOC NDVI for long-term continuity with MODIS and AVHRR, which is not currently produced as part of the standard VIIRS Vegetation Index Environmental Data Record. © 2012 IEEE.
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