Minimize Applications

Land Use and Land Cover Research

This research reveals land use and land cover changes, and contributes to clarifying the mechanism of such changes and the development of change models. It is important to develop the following products and algorithms for these purposes.

  • High-resolution Digital Elevation Model:
    Topographical conditions strongly influence land use determination and its change process as well as environmental impacts such as soil erosion and runoff changes. In these research categories, a Digital Elevation Model (DEM) which corresponds to a 1: 25,000 to 1: 100,000 scale topographical map is useful. Algorithms for stereo matching and interferometric measurement need to be developed.
  • Orthophoto image (PRISM, AVNIR-2, PALSAR images) and land use and land cover data:
    These can reveal sprawl of urban areas and villages, changes of agricultural land and agricultural practices, deforestation, etc. Radar images may also be able to detect tillage variations (variation of tillage surface roughness) and changes of cropping pattern. It is also necessary to promote research for integrating ALOS data with ADEOS-II data.

Topography and Geology

This research contributes to measuring changes in terrain and watercourses due to soil erosion and slope failure as well as to classifying and analyzing terrain features with elevation data. It is thus essential that the following data products and algorithms be developed.

  • High-resolution DEM:
    High-resolution DEM can be used for terrain classification and analysis as well as watercourse analysis.
  • Orthophoto image (particularly PALSAR image):
    An orthophoto image can be used for extraction and classification of terrain features and so on.
  • Elevation change due to soil erosion and sedimentation:
    Interferometric measurement is expected to provide a method for measuring time-series changes of land elevation. An area which a topographic condition changes remarkably due to soil erosion and sedimentation, such as the Yellow River basin, is selected as the objective area.

Terrestrial (Vegetation) Ecosystem, Agriculture and Forestry Research

This research contributes to clarifying vegetation dynamics with emphasis on the carbon cycle, monitoring agricultural production, estimating productivity of pastures based on the vegetation dynamics, and investigating biomass changes caused by human activities. For this purpose, the following data products and algorithms need to be developed using AVNIR-2 data or other satellite data.

  • Forest distribution monitoring:
    Methods for measuring global forestry distribution are expected to be advanced using PALSAR or AVNIR-2.
  • Vegetation biomass distribution measurement :
    Vegetation biomass is a key parameter which describes vegetation dynamics. A method of measuring vegetation biomass with focus on forests with simultaneous observations by PRISM and AVNIR-2 is expected to be developed.
  • Application to forest management:
    A method of monitoring deforestation and afforestation and estimating forest growth should also be developed concurrently with the development of a biomass measurement method.
  • Monitoring the productivity of pastures and crop land:
    Developing a method for determining the crop planting area, estimating productivity of pastures and crop land in a specific area, based on intensive observation by both PALSAR and AVNIR-2, is expected. In addition, a method of monitoring the changes of agricultural production and productivity of pastures caused by drought should also be developed.
  • Monitoring vegetation change due to human activities such as biomass burning:
    A method for measuring and monitoring the variation of biomass density and vegetation structure due to biomass burning in specific areas with intensive observations using PALSAR together with AVNIR-2 needs to be developed.
  • Desertification Monitoring:
    This aims at monitoring the decline of land productivity and soil degradation due to excessive cultivation and pasturage and improper irrigation. Methods of indirectly monitoring desertification need to be developed by observing vegetative deterioration using PALSAR and AVNIR-2 as well as directly monitoring of salt accumulation on the soil surface using AVNIR-2.