Efforts to use satellites to monitor the condition and productivity of crops, although extensive, can be challenging to operationalize at field scales in part due to low frequency revisit of higher resolution space-based sensors, in the context of an actively growing crop canopy. The presence of clouds and cloud shadows further impedes the exploitation of high resolution optical sensors for operational monitoring of crop development. The objective of this research was to present an option to facilitate greater temporal observing opportunities to monitor the accumulation of corn biomass, by integrating biomass products from Synthetic Aperture Radar (SAR) and optical satellite sensors. To accomplish this integration, a transfer function was developed using a Neural Network algorithm to relate estimated corn biomass from SAR to that estimated from optical data. With this approach, end users can exploit biomass products to monitor corn development, regardless of the source of satellite data. • The Water Cloud Model (WCM) was calibrated or parametrized for horizontal transmit and horizontal received (HH) and horizontal transmit and vertical received (HV) C-band SAR backscatter using a least square algorithm. • Biomass and volumetric soil moisture were estimated from dual-polarized RADARSAT-2 images without any ancillary input data. • A feed forward backpropagation Neural Network algorithm was trained as a transfer function between the biomass estimates from RADARSAT-2 and the biomass estimates from RapidEye.

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Department of Geography and Environmental Studies

Hosseini, M. (Mehdi), McNairn, H. (Heather), Mitchell, S, Robertson, L.D. (Laura Dingle), Davidson, A. (Andrew), & Homayouni, S. (Saeid). (2020). Integration of synthetic aperture radar and optical satellite data for corn biomass estimation. MethodsX, 7. doi:10.1016/j.mex.2020.100857