Downscaling SMAP Soil Moisture Using Geoinformation Data and Geostatistics

Authors: Yaping Xu*, Louisiana State University
Topics: Water Resources and Hydrology, Spatial Analysis & Modeling, Remote Sensing
Keywords: Downscaling, SMAP, Geoinformation, Geostatistics, Kriging
Session Type: Paper
Day: 4/12/2018
Start / End Time: 8:00 AM / 9:40 AM
Room: Studio 10, Marriott, 2nd Floor
Presentation File: No File Uploaded


Soil moisture is important for agricultural and hydrological studies. However, ground truth soil moisture data for wide area is difficult to achieve. Microwave remote sensing such as Soil Moisture Active Passive (SMAP) can offer a solution for wide coverage. However, existing global soil moisture products only provide observations at coarse spatial resolutions, which often limit their applications in regional agricultural and hydrological studies. This paper therefore aims to generate fine scale soil moisture information and extend soil moisture spatial availability. A statistical downscaling scheme is presented that incorporates multiple fine scale geoinformation data into the downscaling of coarse scale SMAP data in the absence of ground measurement data. Geoinformation data related to soil moisture patterns including digital elevation model (DEM), land surface temperature (LST), land use and normalized difference vegetation index (NDVI) at a fine scale are used as auxiliary environmental variables for downscaling SMAP data. Generalized additive model (GAM) and regression tree are first conducted to derive statistical relationships between SMAP data and auxiliary geoinformation data at an original coarse scale, and residuals are then downscaled to a finer scale via area-to-point kriging (ATPK) by accounting for the spatial correlation information of the input residuals. The results from standard validation scores as well as the triple collocation (TC) method against soil moisture in-situ measurements show that the downscaling method can significantly improve the spatial details of SMAP soil moisture while maintain the accuracy.

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