Forest Canopy Research

Studying forest canopies is an ideal application for field spectroradiometers. Examples of research projects in evaluating forest canopy characteristics include:

  • Environmental research using leaf reflectance
  • Canopy architecture and nutrient concentration
  • Discrimination and identification of different plant species within a heterogeneous canopy for species mapping
  • Nitrogen cycling and whole canopy photosynthetic capacity
  • Herb and moss biomass studies in closed canopy environments
  • Leaf morphology, leaf distribution, leaf allocation, leaf orientation
  • Forest canopy moisture content and forest fire risk
  • Measurement of vegetation for chlorophyll, lignin, cellulose, hemi-cellulose and nitrogen

Because it is non-destructive, spectroscopy is a popular tool for remote sensing applications like canopy research. Measurement and analysis won’t change or affect the sample in any way, no chemicals or hazardous materials are used, measurements are very fast, and several different vegetation characteristics can be gleaned from a single scan. And, SPECTRAL EVOLUTION’S portable agricultural spectrometers and spectroradiometers are designed for easy use in the field, with rugged construction, light weight, and reliable operation.

Spectral signatures of materials are defined by reflectance or absorption as a function of wavelength. NIR spectroscopy measures the reflectance of infrared light wavelengths for samples and the shapes of the leaf/vegetation spectra correspond to important characteristics, including species identification, health, stress, infestation, pollution, climate change, drought, fertilization, and more – all from a single scan.

The spectra collected can be analyzed using a range of third party analysis and chemometric packages, including GRAMS, The Spectral Geologist (TSG), and others. SPECTRAL EVOLUTION’S DARWin SP Data Acquisition software saves your spectra as ASCII files for use with analysis software.

In addition for the PSR+ 3500, RS-5400 and SR-3500 full range spectroradiometers, DARWin SP includes optional EZ-ID sample identification software that matches a target spectra against a library of known spectra. If you want to build a custom library, EZ- ID offers the fast and easy-to-use Custom Library Builder module. This module allows researchers to quickly and easily build custom libraries of known samples for comparison with unknown target samples.

Spectroradiometers for forest canopy research include:

  • PSR+ 3500 – 350-2500nm spectral range
  • RS-8800– Internet of Things control from iPhone, Android device or tablet
  • NaturaSpec™– full range high resolution field spectroradiometer
  • RS-3500 remote sensing bundle – spectroradiometer and accessories
  • PSR-1100f – handheld unit with built-in keypad and LCD display
  • UDS-1100 – simultaneous upwelling/downwelling measurement

UV/VIS/NIR reflectance spectroscopy satisfies the researchers need for speed and precision in the estimation of key forest canopy characteristics. SPECTRAL EVOLUTION spectroradiometers include pull-down menu access to more than 19 vegetation indices.