Comparison of NDVI and NDRE Indices to Detect Differences in Vegetation and Chlorophyll Content


Boris Boiarskii,Hideo Hasegawa2,





This paper reports a field-scale study to detect differences in the amount of vegetation and chlorophyll content of crops using an unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) fitted with a multispectral camera. The purpose of this study, on the experimental farm of Niigata University, Niigata, Japan, was to identify poorly-growing areas of vegetation that might require additional soil fertilizer. The normalized difference vegetation index (NDVI) and normalized difference red edge (NDRE) were obtained from five spectral band images (red, green, blue, infrared (NIR) and red edge (REDGE)) that were processed by software into a full image map. We used the image map obtained to analyze the farmland and identify variations in the greenness of plants. We compared two layers with different indices and indicated differences in vegetation activity for NDVI and NDRE. NDVI showed visible green color wherever vegetation was present. With NDRE we observed crops with low chlorophyll content, indicating nitrogen limitation in the leaves. These observations demonstrate the efficacy of using NDRE as a sensitive index for monitoring chlorophyll content. Therefore, we propose that different indices may be most useful for different crops, plant density, seeding rates and growth stages.


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