Monday, 25 May 2015

New paper tests SALCA data processing algorithm

A new paper, led by Steve Hancock, has just been published in Remote Sensing of Environment comparing different methods for intensity estimation from full-waveform lidar data over vegetation. The paper shows, amongst other things, that the the 'sum' method is more accurate than Gaussian fitting when extracting intensity from full-waveform lidar data. Steve was instrumental in developing data processing methods for SALCA and the sum method is now routinely implemented in our data processing.
Steven Hancock, John Armston, Zhan Li, Rachel Gaulton, Philip Lewis, Mathias Disney, F. Mark Danson, Alan Strahler, Crystal Schaaf, Karen Anderson, Kevin J. Gaston, 2015, Waveform lidar over vegetation: An evaluation of inversion methods for estimating return energy, Remote Sensing of Environment, 164, 208-224,
Science Direct link to pdf
ResearchGate link

New researcher joins the SALCA team

The Salford SALCA team has a new member, Fadal Sasse, who joins as a PhD researcher from Libya. Fadal, also know as Sasse, has an MSc in Environmental Science from the Diponegoro University, Semarang, Indonesia, where his thesis was on forest community structure in the Sungai Langat Forest Reserve, Selangor. Sasse will undertake research to better characterize forest structure and species composition using terrestrial laser scanners, initially continuing to work at UK test sites, and possibly developing the work in tropical forest environments. He will use the SALCA instrument and focus on the spectral information available from the dual-wavelength instrument, and aim to combine this with measurements from other TLS measuring in visible wavelengths. 

Sasse and Lucy collecting SALCA data at Delamere Forest

Wednesday, 6 May 2015

SALCA talk in Brazil

Last week Mark Danson contributed to a workshop on Biodiversity Monitoring organized by The Fundação de Amparo à Pesquisa do Estado de Minas Gerais (FAPEMIG) in Belo Horizonte, Brazil. The University of Salford team presented their research on various aspects of biodiversity monitoring including Mark's presentation on "Forest biodiversity Indicators from novel terrestrial laser scanners". Other participants included Marcio Uehara Prado and Samuel Nienow from the Chico Mendes Institute for Biodiversty Conservation (ICMBio), part of the Brazilian governments' Ministry of the Environment. There were around 70 participants from Universities in Minas Gerais and from a range of other national organizations.

Round table at the FAPEMIG meeting

Mark Danson at the FAPEMIG meeting

US National Science Foundation funds collaborative research on ecological applications of terrestrial laser scanning

International funding from the US National Science Foundation (NSF) has been secured to support work to measure and monitor change in terrestrial biomass and carbon in forest environments. Researchers from the School of Environment and Life Sciences will join an international network of scientists developing new approaches to measure forest structure and function using terrestrial laser scanners (TLS). TLS provide detailed three-dimensional measurements of forests by firing millions of laser pulses up into the canopy and recording information that can be used to monitor changes in forest biomass with unprecedented accuracy. Salford has been at the forefront of TLS research for several years and the team lead by Professor Mark Danson recently developed the Salford Advance Canopy Analyser (SALCA), a novel TLS that has produced the most detailed measurements of forest structure ever made.

As part of the $500,000 NSF grant the Salford team will take part in collaborative workshops and TLS inter-calibration activities in the US, and host meetings of the project group in Salford.  Exchange of staff between the US participants at the University of Boston, and University of Massachsetts, and the University of Salford will also take place. Professor Danson is a member of the project Steering Committee that will guide project development. The project is led by Professor Alan Strahler from the University of Boston and includes groups from University College London, UK, University of Wageningen, Netherlands, and University of Queensland, Australia.