Estimation of soil organic carbon by combining hyperspectral and radar remote sensing to reduce coupling effects of soil surface moisture and roughness


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Soil organic carbon (SOC) is important in the global carbon cycle. Accurate estimation of SOC content in cultivated land is a prerequisite for evaluating the carbon sequestration potential and quality of soils. However, existing SOC prediction studies based on hyperspectral remote sensing neglect the spectral response of the physical properties of surface soil, leading to inadequate model generalization. With the exponential growth of remote sensing data, the development of pixel-level soil spectral correction methods based on multi-source remote sensing data has become an interesting and challenging topic. This method aims to minimize the effect of soil physical properties on spectra, thus addressing the poor spatiotemporal transferability of SOC prediction models due to uncertain variations in surface soil physical properties. In this study, a soil spectral correction strategy is constructed using satellite hyperspectral image (HSI) and synthetic aperture radar (SAR) images through multi-order polynomial regression and convolutional neural networks. This strategy considers soil physical variables such as soil moisture (SM) content and root mean square height (RMSH) of soil surface roughness. The soil spectral correction model and SOC content prediction model were established using 80 soil samples collected from Site 1. Afterward, the performance and transferability of both models were verified using the remaining 25 samples from Site 1 and 50 samples from Site 2. The results showed that: 1) The effect of SM and RMSH on the soil pixel spectrum can be significantly reduced after correcting HSI using soil spectral correction strategy. The correlation coefficients between the corrected pixel spectrum and the ground-based spectrum increase by over 60 % compared with those between the original spectrum and the ground-based spectrum. 2) Soil spectral correction improves the prediction accuracy and mapping capability of HSI for SOC content, with the highest RP2 of 0.743 and RMSEP of 3.455 g/kg at Site 1. 3) Compared with the original HSI-based SOC prediction model, the soil spectral correction strategy based on multi-order polynomial and convolutional neural network reduced the RMSEP of SOC prediction results at Site 2 by 5.082 g/kg and 5.454 g/kg, and the RP2 increased by 0.390 and 0.409, respectively. 4) When predicting SOC content from raw HIS, SM and RMSH contribute to more than 60 % of the bias, with SM having a larger bias than RMSH. The findings of this study emphasize the influence of soil physical properties on SOC prediction and contribute to the existing research on SOC mapping using HSI and SAR data.
Soil organic carbon,Hyperspectral imagery,Radar imagery,Mapping,Soil physical properties
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