EXTRACTION OF LEAF ANGLE DISTRIBUTION FROM AN INDIVIDUAL BROADLEAF TREE USING TERRESTRIAL LASER SCANNING DATA
Keywords: Leaf angle distribution, Terrestrial laser scanning, Leaf segmentation, Leaf area index, point cloud
Abstract. The angular distribution of leaves is a key vegetation structural parameter for evaluating the reflection and transmission of solar radiation through vegetation canopies. Accurate extraction of Leaf Angle Distribution (LAD) is of great importance in estimating other vegetation structural parameters such as the canopy clumping and leaf area index. However, field measurement of LAD is time-consuming, labour-intensive and subjective. In most studies, LAD is assumed to follow the spherical distribution assumption within canopy which may lead to considerable errors. To address this issue, we proposed a new approach for leaf segmentation and LAD measurement of individual broadleaf tree based on the TLS point cloud data. Based on the point density, point continuity and the distribution of intensity in the point cloud, this approach provides a fast and accurate leaf segmentation and LAD extraction strategy. Results of this TLS-based LAD method compared well with that extracted by the field measurement and the MDI-based method. This strategy shows its potential and applicability in accurate LAD measurement and LAI estimation.