Object-based image classification for burned area mapping of Creus Cape, Spain, using NOAA-AVHRR imagery

TitleObject-based image classification for burned area mapping of Creus Cape, Spain, using NOAA-AVHRR imagery
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2004
AuthorsIoannis Z. Gitas, Mitri, GH, Ventura, G
JournalRemote Sensing of Environment
Pagination409 - 413
Date PublishedJan-08-2004
KeywordsBurned area mapping, NOAA-AVHRR, Object-based image classification


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Due to the ability of the NOAA-AVHRR sensor to cover a wide area and its high temporal frequency, it is possible to quickly obtain a general overview of the prevailing situation over a large area of terrain and, more specifically, quickly assess the damage caused by a recent large forest fire by mapping the extent of the burned area. The aim of this work was to map a large forest fire that recently took place on the Spanish Mediterranean coast using innovative image classification techniques and low spatial resolution imagery. The methodology involved developing an object-based classification model using spectral as well as contextual object information. The burned area map resulting from the image classification was compared with the fire perimeter provided by the Catalan Environmental Department in terms of spatial overlap and size in order to determine to what extent they were compatible. Results of the comparison indicated a high degree (≈90%) of spatial agreement. The total burned area of the classified image was found to be 6900 ha, compared to a fire perimeter of 6000 ha produced by the Catalan Environmental Department. It was concluded that, although the object-oriented classification approach was capable of affording very promising results when mapping a recent burn on the Spanish Mediterranean coast, the method in question required further assessment to ascertain its ability to map other burned areas in the Mediterranean.



Short TitleRemote Sensing of Environment