The first demonstration of a multispectral light detection and ranging (LiDAR) optimized for detailed structure and physiology measurements in forest ecosystems is described. The basic principle is to utilize, in a single instrument, both the capacity of multispectral sensing to measure plant physiology [through normalized difference vegetation index (NDVI) and photochemical reflectance index (PRI)] with the ability of LiDAR to measure vertical structure information and generate "hot spot" (specular) reflectance data independent of solar illumination. A tunable laser operated at four wavelengths (531, 550, 660, and 780 nm) was used to measure profiles of the NDVI and the PRI. Laboratory-based measurements were conducted for live trees, demonstrating that realistic values of the indexes can be measured. A model-based analysis demonstrates that the LiDAR waveforms cannot only capture the tree height information but also picks up the seasonal and vertical variation of NDVI inside the tree canopy.
- Forest canopy
- multispectral light detection and ranging (LiDAR)
- normalized difference vegetation index (NDVI)
- LIGHT-USE EFFICIENCY
- BOREAL FOREST