Hyperspectral Imaging Analysis for Conserving Biodiversity by Fujitsu

Posted by GIS talk On Tuesday, July 19, 2011
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Fujitsu Limited and Fujitsu Laboratories Limited today announced the development of technology to improve the accuracy of plant identification with aerial hyperspectral images. This enables accurate distinctions to be made even among trees with similar coloring, such as the cedar tree and the Japanese cypress.

This technology makes possible the accurate identification of plant species in an area without on-the-ground inspections of river beds or forests, for example, even by non-experts. As a result, studies on a variety of issues, such as the extent to which non-native plant species are flourishing, and thereby threatening native ecosystems, or studies on the distribution of multiple tree species in a given area, can be performed quickly and at low cost.

Applying information and communication technology to biodiversity conservation is one of the Fujitsu Group Biodiversity Action Principles. In order to conserve biodiversity, it is essential to have an accurate grasp of the existing ecosystem and the status of plant and animal life in a given forest or river, for example.

Up until now, most plant studies have either been on-the-ground surveys by experts or remote studies using satellite photos. Both of these methods have drawbacks. Expert surveys are costly and time-consuming to produce, and often require work in dangerous areas. On the other hand, remote surveys lack precision. Specifically, it is difficult to distinguish among trees with highly similar coloring, such as the cedar tree and the Japanese cypress, both of which are evergreen needle-leaved trees. There is therefore a need for a highly precise method that could accurately distinguish different tree species quickly and at a low cost.

Read more of the study here.


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