FREE GLOBAL DSM ASSESSMENT ON LARGE SCALE AREAS EXPLOITING THE POTENTIALITIES OF THE INNOVATIVE GOOGLE EARTH ENGINE PLATFORM
Keywords: DSM assessment, Google Earth Engine, ASTER, SRTM, geometric accuracy
Abstract. The high-performance cloud-computing platform Google Earth Engine has been developed for global-scale analysis based on the Earth observation data. In particular, in this work, the geometric accuracy of the two most used nearly-global free DSMs (SRTM and ASTER) has been evaluated on the territories of four American States (Colorado, Michigan, Nevada, Utah) and one Italian Region (Trentino Alto- Adige, Northern Italy) exploiting the potentiality of this platform. These are large areas characterized by different terrain morphology, land covers and slopes. The assessment has been performed using two different reference DSMs: the USGS National Elevation Dataset (NED) and a LiDAR acquisition. The DSMs accuracy has been evaluated through computation of standard statistic parameters, both at global scale (considering the whole State/Region) and in function of the terrain morphology using several slope classes. The geometric accuracy in terms of Standard deviation and NMAD, for SRTM range from 2-3 meters in the first slope class to about 45 meters in the last one, whereas for ASTER, the values range from 5-6 to 30 meters.
In general, the performed analysis shows a better accuracy for the SRTM in the flat areas whereas the ASTER GDEM is more reliable in the steep areas, where the slopes increase. These preliminary results highlight the GEE potentialities to perform DSM assessment on a global scale.