The International Archives of the Photogrammetry, Remote Sensing and Spatial Information Sciences
Publications Copernicus
Articles | Volume XLI-B1
03 Jun 2016
 | 03 Jun 2016


Hüseyin Topan, Ali Cam, Mustafa Özendi, Murat Oruç, Karsten Jacobsen, and Talha Taşkanat

Keywords: Pléiades, Georeferencing Accuracy, Image Quality, Pansharpening, DSM/DTM

Abstract. Pléiades 1A and 1B are twin optical satellites of Optical and Radar Federated Earth Observation (ORFEO) program jointly running by France and Italy. They are the first satellites of Europe with sub-meter resolution. Airbus DS (formerly Astrium Geo) runs a MyGIC (formerly Pléiades Users Group) program to validate Pléiades images worldwide for various application purposes. The authors conduct three projects, one is within this program, the second is supported by BEU Scientific Research Project Program, and the third is supported by TÜBİTAK. Assessment of georeferencing accuracy, image quality, pansharpening performance and Digital Surface Model/Digital Terrain Model (DSM/DTM) quality subjects are investigated in these projects. For these purposes, triplet panchromatic (50 cm Ground Sampling Distance (GSD)) and VNIR (2 m GSD) Pléiades 1A images were investigated over Zonguldak test site (Turkey) which is urbanised, mountainous and covered by dense forest.

The georeferencing accuracy was estimated with a standard deviation in X and Y (SX, SY) in the range of 0.45m by bias corrected Rational Polynomial Coefficient (RPC) orientation, using ~170 Ground Control Points (GCPs). 3D standard deviation of ±0.44m in X, ±0.51m in Y, and ±1.82m in Z directions have been reached in spite of the very narrow angle of convergence by bias corrected RPC orientation. The image quality was also investigated with respect to effective resolution, Signal to Noise Ratio (SNR) and blur coefficient. The effective resolution was estimated with factor slightly below 1.0, meaning that the image quality corresponds to the nominal resolution of 50cm. The blur coefficients were achieved between 0.39-0.46 for triplet panchromatic images, indicating a satisfying image quality. SNR is in the range of other comparable space borne images which may be caused by de-noising of Pléiades images. The pansharpened images were generated by various methods, and are validated by most common statistical metrics and also visual interpretation. The generated DSM and DTM were achieved with ±1.6m standard deviation in Z (SZ) in relation to a reference DTM.