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Modeling the growth of forest height using ICESat-2 photon counting data over tropical forested areas

The growth of forest heights represents the forest dynamics as well as the increase of forest above-ground biomass. Precise growth model of forest height is required for the verification of dynamic models such as 3PG (Tickle et al. 2001), ZELIG (Urban 1990) and others. Typically, the age-height model is based on the repeated measure of tree height on permanent sample plots. However, it is difficult to obtain such kind of measurements, especially over long-term periods. Multi-temporal small footprint lidar data has been used to model the forest growth (Song et al. 2016; Vepakomma et al. 2011; Zhao et al. 2018). However, the length of observation period is mostly less than 10 years due to the limited history of small footprint lidar system. In addition, such kind of data is also limited. The synergy lidar with other data is necessary to extend the length of observation (Vega and St-Onge 2008). The photon counting data of ICEsat-2 has just been released. Some results demonstrated its good performance on measuring the forest height (Popescu et al. 2018). Though the ICESat-2 data is not able to model the growth of natural forests, it should be possible to model the growth of secondary forest, especially those grew up over bare ground caused by logging or heavy wild fire. The forest age can be estimated from SAR or multispectral historical images, while the ICEsat-2 provides the current height of forest stand. The detailed results will be presented on the meeting.

Wenjia Ni
Institute of remote sensing and digital earth, chinese academy of sicences

Jiachen Dong
Institute of Remote Sensing and Digital Earth, Chinese Academy of Sciences

Zhiyu Zhang
Institute of Remote Sensing and Digital Earth, Chinese Academy of Sciences

Guoqing Sun
Department of Geographical Sciences, University of Maryland
United States


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