Retrieval of Hyperspectral Information from Multispectral Data for Perennial Ryegrass Biomass Estimation

Gustavo Togeiro De Alckmin, Lammert Kooistra*, Richard Rawnsley, Sytze De Bruin, Arko Lucieer

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

5 Citations (Scopus)


The use of spectral data is seen as a fast and non-destructive method capable of monitoring pasture biomass. Although there is great potential in this technique, both end users and sensor manufacturers are uncertain about the necessary sensor specifications and achievable accuracies in an operational scenario. This study presents a straightforward parametric method able to accurately retrieve the hyperspectral signature of perennial ryegrass (Lolium perenne) canopies from multispectral data collected within a two-year period in Australia and the Netherlands. The retrieved hyperspectral data were employed to generate optimal indices and continuum-removed spectral features available in the scientific literature. For performance comparison, both these simulated features and a set of currently employed vegetation indices, derived from the original band values, were used as inputs in a random forest algorithm and accuracies of both methods were compared. Our results have shown that both sets of features present similar accuracies (root mean square error (RMSE) ≈490 and 620 kg DM/ha) when assessed in cross-validation and spatial cross-validation, respectively. These results suggest that for pasture biomass retrieval solely from top-of-canopy reflectance (ranging from 550 to 790 nm), better performing methods do not rely on the use of hyperspectral or, yet, in a larger number of bands than those already available in current sensors. View Full-Text
Original languageEnglish
Article number7192
Number of pages20
Issue number24
Publication statusPublished - 2020


  • Continuum-removal
  • Machine learning
  • Parametric-regression
  • Random-forest
  • Spectral resampling
  • Spectral simulation
  • Vegetation indices


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