Terrestrial laser scanning (TLS) data provide 3-D measurements of vegetation structure and have the potential to support the calibration and validation of satellite and airborne sensors. The increasing range of different commercial and scientific TLS instruments holds challenges for data and instrument interoperability. Using data from various TLS sources will be critical to upscale study areas or compare data. In this paper, we provide a general framework to compare the interoperability of TLS instruments. We compare three TLS instruments that are the same make and model, the RIEGL VZ-400. We compare the range accuracy and evaluate the manufacturer's radiometric calibration for the uncalibrated return intensities. Our results show that the range accuracy between instruments is comparable and within the manufacturer's specifications. This means that the spatial XYZ data of different instruments can be combined into a single data set. Our findings demonstrate that radiometric calibration is instrument specific and needs to be carried out for each instrument individually before including reflectance information in TLS analysis. We show that the residuals between the calibrated reflectance panels and the apparent reflectance measured by the instrument are greatest for highest reflectance panels (residuals ranging from 0.058 to 0.312).
|Journal||IEEE Transactions on Geoscience and Remote Sensing|
|Publication status||Published - 2017|