ISPRS Annals of the Photogrammetry, Remote Sensing and Spatial Information Sciences
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Articles | Volume V-3-2020
ISPRS Ann. Photogramm. Remote Sens. Spatial Inf. Sci., V-3-2020, 417–424, 2020
https://doi.org/10.5194/isprs-annals-V-3-2020-417-2020
ISPRS Ann. Photogramm. Remote Sens. Spatial Inf. Sci., V-3-2020, 417–424, 2020
https://doi.org/10.5194/isprs-annals-V-3-2020-417-2020

  03 Aug 2020

03 Aug 2020

DERIVATION OF SUPRAGLACIAL DEBRIS COVER BY MACHINE LEARNING ALGORITHMS ON THE GEE PLATFORM: A CASE STUDY OF GLACIERS IN THE HUNZA VALLEY

F. Xie1,2, S. Liu1,2,3, Y. Gao1,2, Y. Zhu1,2, K. Wu1,2, M. Qi1,2, S. Duan1,2, and A. M. Tahir4 F. Xie et al.
  • 1Yunnan Key Laboratory of International Rivers and Transboundary Eco-Security, Yunnan University, Kunming 650091, China
  • 2Institute of International Rivers and Eco-security, Yunnan University, Kunming, Yunnan 650091, China
  • 3State Key Laboratory of Cryospheric Sciences, Northwest Institute of Eco-Environment and Resources, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Lanzhou 730000, China
  • 4Department of Environmental Sciences, COMSATS University Islamabad, Abbottabad Campus, Abbottabad 22060, Pakistan

Keywords: Supraglacial debris cover, Hunza Valley, Machine learning, Otsu, Google Earth Engine

Abstract. Calculating the spatial-temporal distribution of supraglacial debris cover on glaciers is essential for understanding mass balance processes, glacier lake outburst floods, hydrological predictions, and glacier fluctuations that have attracted attention in recent years. However, due to the reflectance of supraglacial debris is similar to that of non-glacier slopes, mapping supraglacial debris cover based on optical remote sensing remains challenging. In this paper, we used NDSI and machine learning algorithm to extract debris cover on glaciers in Hunza Valley, Pakistan. Our result showed that the RF model has the best classification accuracy with kappa coefficient of 0.94 and overall accuracy of 96%. The debris-covered area increased by 21.31% from 1990 to 2019 (394.76 km2 – 478.88 km2) in the study area. Results and the method are of significance in the assessment of meltwater modeling for glaciers with debris cover.