Mapping Forest Burn Severity Using Non Anniversary Date Satellite Images

Cobb, Blake
Mapping the intensity and pattern of forest wild fires are essential for monitoring vegetation establishment and regrowth in burnt areas. US Forest Service (USFS) uses remotely sensed data for estimating the extent and severity of each wild fire. USFS uses anniversary-date images i.e., acquired in same month of different years for this purpose. One of the disadvantages of using images acquired on anniversary dates is that one has to use data that were acquired from several years apart. The objective of this research was to determine if comparable burn severity information can be derived from non-anniversary date images. Burn severity information following a wild fire in north eastern Wyoming was derived from a pre- and post-fire images acquired on the same year and the area estimates were compared to the USFS estimates derived from anniversary date images. This presentation will compare and contrast the two estimates and highlight the advantage of using non-anniversary date Landsat images for mapping burn severity.
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