Biomass estimations by LiDAR and multiangular information from MISR sensor data

Project facts

Project promoter
Rey Juan Carlos University
Project Number:
Target groups
Researchers or scientists
Initial project cost:
Final project cost:
From EEA Grants:
€ 8,143
The project is carried out in:


Forest ecosystems play a key role in the global carbon cycle. Conventional methods on forest biomass are focused on inventory data, but they have in general limits in spatial and temporal sampling. Airborne Light detection and Ranging (LiDAR) is one of the most remote sensing technologies for estimating above ground trees biomass. The objective of the project is estimating biomass carbon stocks and biophysical properties of forest stands with a combination of LiDAR and High resolution images and comparing the goodness of LiDAR data from Spain with LiDAR data from Norway. The project expects that the benefits will be good biomass estimations from LiDAR data, better knowledge from Spain airborne LiDAR data goodness and good biomass estimations from BRFs and RPV model parameters from MISR data. Scientific community is expected to benefit from the project. The donor partner, Norwegian University of Life Sciences, will contribute its know-how and experience in LiDAR and biomass estimations and the project promoter, Rey Juan Carlos University, with its expertise in biomass estimations by MISR data.

Summary of project results

Nowadays it is necessary to develop models for forest biomass estimations which can be the basis for good energetic pacifications or better silviculture treatment. The research lines are focused on the combination of LlDAR with high resolution images. Airborne Light detection and Ranging (LiDAR) is one of the most remote sensing technologies for estimating some forest variables. We have inventory forest data from Spain; from Cabeza de Hierro mount in the municipally of Rascafría, in Madrid. This inventory field data consist on 745 plots with information relative to Cubic Volume per Hectare, and number of trees measure in a stratified process and with proportional allocation, under a mesh of 160 square meters and with concentrically plots of 20, 15 and 5 meters; inside the grid in the mesh. These data were acquired from the third review of the mount, made by D. José Alfredo Bravo Fernández and D. Rafael Serrada Hierro in 2005 and accepted in 2007. The project got the ground data to validate the models for estimating the wood (Vm3/ha) from Politecnica University, although the plots were 745 we notice we did not have all the details we needed for explaining as well as possible our estimations. Several facts slowed down the work we expected to finish. Therefore although we did the estimations with this 63 plots we decided wait until having all the details. But on the other hand grantee started writing some of the paper. As regards with the estimations of some variables using multiangular data from passive sensor ([MISR] Multiagular Imaging Spectro-radiometer, from TERRA platform) our aims were: Testing with BRFs from the 9 cameras in the 9 different angles that provide MISR, with the 3 parameters of the RPV model, from MISR images and from dates close to the date of captured field inventory plots and make estimations of wood (V m3/Ha) with different models of regression and validate with the ground data. I only were doing the pre-processing of the MISR data, filtering the images with a cloud mask and doing the inversion of the BRF´s to take the three parameters of the MRPV model. At the moment the most beneficiary of the project is the Spanish grantee. She was learning R programming, got support directly with the people involved in the partner part and with Knut Marius Hauglin and Liviu Theodor Ene, researchers and professors from NMBU too.

Summary of bilateral results

During the period of stay it took place the meeting of the area in which every person involved spoke about the challenges in develop or just developed. Besides it was many talks and partners collaborate with some other people working in the department, although, were not involved at first in the grant-project. Partners are preparing the publication with the results obtained until know. These three months could be the start point for future meetings and cooperation but right now the grantee cannot explain well this issue because they are starting and don’t have the whole results. Grantee’s plans focus on spreading the knowledge and experiences as soon as they can.