Using Stereoscopic High Resolution Satellite Imagery to Assess Landscape and Stand Level Characteristics

ObjectivesStereoscopic Imagery

This project is an outcome from the report, “Managing Landslide Risk from Forest Practices in British Columbia”, Forest Practices Board, FPB/SIR/14, July 2005. Some of the recommendations from this report are:

  • The Ministry of Forests and Range should regularly conduct inventories of landslides as part of the Forest and Range Evaluation Program, as there is no FRPA requirement for licensees to report landslides.
  • High spatial resolution, multispectral data collection, and stereoscopic viewing greatly improve the ability of a sensor for landslide detection.
  • IKONOS and QUICKBIRD imagery out performed SPOT imagery for landslide detection
  • Imagery used for landslide detection should combine three properties: high spatial resolution, multispectral data collection, and if possible, stereoscopic viewing.

Background and RationaleSteroscopic Imagery in action

  • The current year objective for this project is to work out the methodology and determine the best composite satellite image products for stereoscopic viewing and interpreting landslides, landscape and stand level characteristics. For example, guided principal component analysis (PCA) and/or factor analysis could be used to derive new image information which can be viewed in stereo, so we do not need to rely solely on traditional natural colour, and false colour infrared colour composites.
  • The second objective for the first year is to acquire imagery in the summer, fall and winter time periods to determine which season, or combination of seasons provides the most useful image interpretation products.
  • The long term objective of this project is to acquire multitemporal imagery over the study site(s), and to determine the best types of image products to determine changes in the forest over time. Again, statistical techniques such as (PCA) could be applied to the multitemporal imagery.


  • Acquire stereo Ikonos Imagery of Escalante area, summer 2006
  • Ground truth field work component, fall 2006
  • Acquisition of stereo Ikonos Imagery of Area of Interest, fall 2006 as comparison
  • Visual interpretation, spatial, spectral and statistical analysis of regional data, winter 2006-7
  • Submission of continuing project plan to FIA-FSP, January 2007
  • Report on analysis and sampling recommendations, spring 2007
  • Acquisition of stereo Ikonos Imagery of Central Coast area, summer 2007