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Additional information

The intention of this section is not to provide a comprehensive list of remote sensing links as several of these already exist, for example that maintained by Wim Bakker at ITC. Instead, it focuses on links specifically related to cal/val, organised into the following sections:

Related Working Groups, Research Groups and Networks
Information about potential ground calibration targets
Sources of information about important algorithms
Computer programs useful for data analysis


Related Working Groups, Research Groups and Networks

www.arm.gov/sites/. This website lists the sites which are part of the international Atmospheric Radiation Monitoring Network
CEOS Working Group on Calibration and Validation. This international organisation provides a forum for calibration and validation information exchange, coordination, and cooperative activities. The WGCV promotes the international exchange of technical information and documentation, joint experiments, and the sharing of facilities, expertise and resources. See, for example, the:
CEOS cal/val Portal. The WGCV operates through six sub-groups, three of which are especially relevant to terrestrial cal/val in the optical domain:.
CEOS IVOS. This is the website of the Infrared and Visible Optical Sensors sub-group of the CEOS Working Group on Calibration and Validation.
CEOS LPV. This is the website of the Land Products Validation sub-group of the CEOS Working Group on Calibration and Validation.
CEOS TM. This is the website of the Terrain Mapping sub-group of the CEOS Working Group on Calibration and Validation.
DIAC-UKAAN. The Distributed Institute for Atmospheric Composition UK Atmospheric Aerosols Network is a NERC-funded knowledge transfer network based at the University of Reading.
NAPLIB. The National Association of Aerial Photographic Libraries. This organisation was established in 1989 to disseminate information about the extensive aerial photographic record of the UK and to share best practice in the conservation and management of aerial photograph collections. Until 2008 it was an affiliated Special Interest Group of the Remote Sensing and Photogrammetry Society.
NERC National Centre for Earth Observation. This was established in April 2008 to advance the understanding and application of Earth Observation in the UK. The vision of NCEO is to accelerate the delivery of world-class science by unlocking the full potential of Earth Observation to monitor, diagnose and predict climate and environmental changes, and to ensure that scientific advances translate into public good (NCEO website, Sept 2008).
SpecNet. Website of the international Spectral Network, a data sharing co-operative committed to acquiring and disseminating spectral data from ground sites which form part of the FluxNet network.
University of Arizona. The Remote Sensing Group within the College of Optical Sciences has long been involved in the vicarious calibration of airborne and satellite sensors.

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Information about potential ground calibration targets

Airfields of Britain Conservation Trust (ABCT). A national charity established in 2005 to preserve Britain's airfield heritage, many of which are suitable as ground calibration targets for use in remote sensing. The ABCT website has a very useful airfield search facility, linked to aerial photographs of each site, allowing preliminary screening of their suitability for this purpose.
CSIRO website with information about hyperspectral test sites in Australia.

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Sources of information about algorithms and QA

MERIS Algorithm Theoretical Basis Documents (ATBD) . The pdfs available on this website describe the theoretical basis of the algorithms used for each of the MERIS data products.
MODIS Data Products. This website lists the various MODIS products and provides links both to the 'Algorithm Theoretical Basis Documents' (ATBD) and to non-technical descriptions of the products and how they are produced.
MCST. Website of the MODIS Characterization Support Team.
MODIS Land QA. Primary website concerned with the Quality Assessment of MODIS products.

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Useful computer programs

[please note that mention here does not constitute a recommendation by NCAVEO or any of its partners]

Many atmospheric correction programs are available, both as stand-alone programs and as part of a larger image processing package. Many are based on the MODTRAN radiative transfer model, and range from those which simply provide a user-friendly front-end to the MODTRAN code (e.g. MODO, MIG and EOGDP), to those which offer enhanced functionality such as image display and additional corrections (e.g. the ATCOR2/3/4 family of programs). Atmospheric correction programs specifically developed for use with hyperspectral data include ATREM (no longer supported or distributed) and FLAASH. Finally, ACORN is an example of a program that can be applied to both multispectral and hyperspectral data.

Many users will already have access to one or more of the standard commercial image processing packages. For those who don't, there are several freely available packages available, including CHIPS, the Copenhagen Image Processing System (no longer being developed); MultiSpec which runs on both PCs and Macs and has a pedigree stretching back to the earliest days of digital image processing; ScanMagic, a commercial package developed in Russia and available in a free 'lite' version and SPRING, developed by INPE, Brazil's National Institute for Space Research.

Limited versions of the leading commercial packages are also available from their distributors: FreeLook (ITT/Vis ENVI), FreeView (PCI Geomatica) and ViewFinder (Erdas Imagine). The European Space Agency provides two free packages: BEAM is an image processing toolbox designed specifically to support ESA sensors, while LEOWorks is a simpler package available for educational use..

Freely available computer programs to support field spectroscopy include the University of California, Davis Centre for Spatial Technologies and Remote Sensing 'Spectral Analysis and Management System' (SAMS). More details about this are available here.

Finally, a program developed specifically to support the visualisation of directional reflectance and to demystify BRDF deserves a special mention. The program is called AnisView and until recently this could be freely downloaded from the Science and Technology for Applied Remote Sensing (STARS) group of the Joint Research Centre of the European Commission.


Example screenshot from AnisView (see Vogt and Verstraete, 2002).

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Last updated 26/09/2008
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