Document Type

Thesis - Open Access

Award Date


Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)


Electrical Engineering and Computer Science

First Advisor

Dennis Helder


Two calibration techniques were developed in this research. First, a calibration technique, in which calibration was transferred to cirrus band and coastal aerosol band from well calibrated reflective bands of Landsat 8 using SCIAMACHY Deep Convective Cloud (DCC) spectra. Second, a novel method to derive relative gains using DCCs and improve the image quality of cirrus band scenes was developed. DCCs are very cold, bright clouds located in the tropopause layer. At small sun elevation and sensor viewing angles, they act as near Lambertian solar reflectors. They have very high signal to noise ratio and can easily be detected using simple IR threshold. Thus, DCCs are an ideal calibration target. Cirrus band in Landsat 8 has band center at 1375nm. Due to high water vapor absorption at this wavelength it is difficult to calibrate the cirrus band using other standard vicarious calibration methods. Similarly, the coastal aerosol band has short wavelength (443nm). At this wavelength maximum scattering can be observed in the atmosphere, due to which it is difficult to calibrate this band. Thus DCCs are investigated to calibrate these two channels. DCC spectra measured by the SCIAMACHY hyperspectral sensor were used to transfer calibration. The gain estimates after band to band calibration using DCC for the coastal aerosol band was 0.986 ±0.0031 and that for cirrus band was 0.982±0.0398. The primarily target was to estimate gains with uncertainty of less than 5%. The results are within required precision levels and the primarily goal of the research was successfully accomplished. The non-uniformity in detector response can cause visible streaks in the image. To remove these visible streaks, modified histogram equalization method was used in the second algorithm. A large number of DCC scenes were binned and relative gains were derived. Results were validated qualitatively by visual analysis and quantitatively by the streaking metric. The streaking metric was below 0.2 for most of the detector which was the required goal. Visible streaks were removed by applying DCC derived gains and in most of the cases DCC gains outperforms the default gains.

Library of Congress Subject Headings

Landsat satellites -- Calibration
Convective clouds
Imaging systems -- Image quality


Includes bibliographical references (pages 71-77)



Number of Pages



South Dakota State University


Copyright © 2015 Suman Bhatta