K-sharp: A segmented regression approach for image sharpening and normalization

Bruno Jose Luis Aragon Solorio, Kerry Cawse-Nicholson, Glynn Hulley, Rasmus Houborg, Joshua B. Fisher

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


    In recent decades, Earth Observation (EO) satellite missions have improved in spatial resolution and revisit times. These missions, traditionally government-funded, utilize state-of-the-art technology and rigorous instrument calibration, with each mission costing millions of dollars. Recently, nano-satellites known as CubeSats are presenting a cost-effective option for EO; their capacity of working as a constellation has brought an unprecedented opportunity for EO in terms of achievable spatial and temporal resolutions, albeit at the cost of decreased accuracy and cross-sensor consistency. As such, CubeSat datasets often require post-calibration approaches before using them for scientific applications. K-sharp is a relatively simple, data-agnostic machine learning approach that combines K-means and partial least squares regression to derive relationships between two sets of images for normalization. This study used Planet's four-band CubeSat imagery to sharpen day-coincident Landsat 8 normalized difference vegetation index, albedo, and the first short-wave infrared (SWIR) band from 30 m to 3 m spatial resolution (it should be noted that the four-band CubeSat product does not include the first SWIR band, and that the calculation of albedo is not directly possible from this product). K-sharp was tested over agricultural, savanna, rainforest, and tundra sites with and without atmospheric correction. Our model reproduced surface conditions with an average r2 of 0.88 (rMAE = 11.39%) across all study sites and target variables when compared against the original Landsat 8 data. These results showcase the promising potential of K-sharp in generating precise, CubeSat-derived datasets with high radiometric quality, which can be incorporated into agricultural or ecological applications to enhance their decision-making process at fine spatial scales.
    Original languageEnglish (US)
    Pages (from-to)100095
    JournalScience of Remote Sensing
    StatePublished - Jul 26 2023


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