High Resolution Land Surface Phenology with PlanetScope


Seasonal changes in vegetation in ecosystems are strongly tied to factors such as carbon and water cycle fluxes. Traditionally, monitoring these changes—called phenology—at high resolution has required the deployment of PhenoCams on the ground. A new study by Moon et al. (2021) compares the performance of PlanetScope data to Harmonized Landsat-8 and Sentinel-2 data for monitoring land surface phenology. The analysis was done using the 2-band enhanced vegetation index (EVI2) for PlanetScope pixels co-located with NASA’s Harmonized Landsat Sentinel-2 (HLS) products centered over areas with PhenoCams installed on the ground over different types of vegetation. Additionally, phenological metrics were assessed algorithmically from PlanetScope and HLS and then compared to greenup and greendown dates from the PhenoCams. Their results demonstrated that Planet’s spatial resolution and time series capability can resolve substantially more phenological differences in vegetation, all the way down to the tree and crop level.

You can read the complete study in Remote Sensing of Environment

Planet data for this work was accessed via the NASA Commercial SmallSat Data Acquisition (CSDA) Program.