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On the prediction of threshold friction velocity of wind erosion using soil reflectance spectroscopy

December 1, 2015

Current approaches to estimate threshold friction velocity (TFV) of soil particle movement, including both experimental and empirical methods, suffer from various disadvantages, and they are particularly not effective to estimate TFVs at regional to global scales. Reflectance spectroscopy has been widely used to obtain TFV-related soil properties (e.g., moisture, texture, crust, etc.), however, no studies have attempted to directly relate soil TFV to their spectral reflectance. The objective of this study was to investigate the relationship between soil TFV and soil reflectance in the visible and near infrared (VIS–NIR, 350–2500 nm) spectral region, and to identify the best range of wavelengths or combinations of wavelengths to predict TFV. Threshold friction velocity of 31 soils, along with their reflectance spectra and texture were measured in the Mojave Desert, California and Moab, Utah. A correlation analysis between TFV and soil reflectance identified a number of isolated, narrow spectral domains that largely fell into two spectral regions, the VIS area (400–700 nm) and the short-wavelength infrared (SWIR) area (1100–2500 nm). A partial least squares regression analysis (PLSR) confirmed the significant bands that were identified by correlation analysis. The PLSR further identified the strong relationship between the first-difference transformation and TFV at several narrow regions around 1400, 1900, and 2200 nm. The use of PLSR allowed us to identify a total of 17 key wavelengths in the investigated spectrum range, which may be used as the optimal spectral settings for estimating TFV in the laboratory and field, or mapping of TFV using airborne/satellite sensors.

Publication Year 2015
Title On the prediction of threshold friction velocity of wind erosion using soil reflectance spectroscopy
DOI 10.1016/j.aeolia.2015.10.001
Authors Junran Li, Cody B. Flagg, Gregory S. Okin, Thomas H. Painter, Kebonye Dintwe, Jayne Belnap
Publication Type Article
Publication Subtype Journal Article
Series Title Aeolian Research
Index ID 70160012
Record Source USGS Publications Warehouse
USGS Organization Southwest Biological Science Center