Geostatistical and local cluster analysis of high resolution hyperspectral imagery for detection of anomalies

Goovaerts, P., Jacquez, G.M. and Marcus, W.A.

Remote Sensing of Environment, Vol. 95 Issue 3 pp. 351-367


This paper describes a new methodology to detect small anomalies in high resolution hyperspectral imagery, which involves successively: (1) a multivariate statistical analysis(principal component analysis, PCA) of all spectral bands; (2) a geostatistical filtering of noise and regional background in the first principal components using factorial kriging; and finally (3) the computation of a local indicator of spatial autocorrelation to detect local clusters of high or low reflectance values and anomalies. The approach is illustrated using 1 m resolution data collected in and near northeastern Yellowstone National Park. Ground validation data for tarps and for disturbed soils on mine tailings demonstrate the ability of the filtering procedure to reduce the proportion of false alarms (i.e., pixels wrongly classified as target), and its robustness under low signal to noise ratios. In almost all scenarios, the proposed approach outperforms traditional anomaly detectors (i.e., RX detector which computes the Mahalanobis distance between the vector of spectral values and the vector of global means), and fewer false alarms are obtained when using a novel statistic S2 (average absolute deviation of p-values from 0.5 through all spectral bands) to summarize information across bands. Image degradation through addition of noise or reduction of spectral resolution tends to blur the detection of anomalies, increasing false alarms, in particular for the identification of the least pure pixels. Results from a mine tailings site demonstrate the approach performs reasonably well for highly complex landscape with multiple targets of various sizes and shapes. By leveraging both spectral and spatial information, the technique requires little or no input from the user, and hence can be readily automated.

Patrick Cross2005