Spain - Barrax / Albacete

Operational Implementation Plans

In situ Data Collection:

Two field campaigns were carried out on 29th March and 12th July, 2016, where two main activities were conducted: a) for crop type identification, and b) for biophysical variables measurements.

Field works were deployed according to the protocol delivered as a result of the FP7 ImagineS Project1 (Camacho et al, 20162). This protocol is in accordance with other scientific developments, as the VALERI project3 the CEOS Land Product Validation group4, and shows the main elements and tasks to perform field campaigns, focused on ground data acquisitions.


  • Crop type:

Since there are two growing seasons, winter and summer, two sampling were conducted, one on 29th March, 2016 and the other on 12th July, 2016, with 92 and 146 crop type plots identified respectively. Figure 3 shows the location of the identified crop type for both campaigns.

Figure 3. Points sampled for crop identification and biophysical parameters on 29 March and 12 July, 2016 in Las Tiesas-Barrax, Spain.


  • Biophysical parameters:

In March 2016, biophysical variables (LAI, LAIeff, FAPAR and FCOVER) were measured in 24 Elementary Sampling Units (ESUs) (Fig.3) using digital hemispherical photographs (DHP).  Afterwards, the obtained data was processed with the CAN‐EYE software to provide LAI, LAIeff, FAPAR and FCOVER.  In July, 51 ESUs were sampled (Fig.3), using DHP and including measurements with LAI 2200C plant canopy analizer and Accupar LP80 devices.  These devices were used to measure LAIeff: DHP, AccuparLP80-Ceptometer and LAI 2200C, meanwhile LAI was measured by DHP, FAPAR was measured by DHP and AccuparLP80 and FCOVER was estimated by DHP. Figure 4 shows digital hemispheric photographs acquired at Las Tiesas-Barrax site during the field campaign carried out in July, 2016.

Figure 4. Examples of Digital Hemispheric Photographs (DHP) samples over different surfaces in Las Tiesas-Barrax site on 12th July, 2016.


In figure 5, the left shows measurements with LAI2200C over an alfalfa field, the operator is Beatríz Fuster. The right shows measurements with DHP over an alfalfa field; the operator is David Vinué. 

Figure 5. Team involved in the field campaign of Las Tiesas site, Barrax (Spain).




Plans for Next Growing Season:

  • As methodological approach has been verified to be consistent with Sentinel-2 imagery, it will be used as the basis for the next growing season campaigns.
  • We plan to test machine learning algorithms for crop type identification
  • We plan to test empirical machine learning versus generic algorithms (physically based) for mapping crop biophysical parameters along the season. 
©2015 Joint Experiment for Crop Assessment and Monitoring