Remote sensing monitoring the spatio-temporal changes of aridification in the Mongolian Plateau based on the general Ts-NDVI space, 1981–2012

Abstract

This paper has developed a general Ts-NDVI triangle space with vegetation index time-series data from AVHRR and MODIS to monitor soil moisture in the Mongolian Plateau during 1981–2012, and studied the spatio-temporal variations of drought based on the temperature vegetation dryness index (TVDI). The results indicated that (1) the developed general Ts-NDVI space extracted from the AVHRR and MODIS remote sensing data would be an effective method to monitor regional drought, moreover, it would be more meaningful if the single time Ts-NDVI space showed an unstable condition; (2) the inverted TVDI was expected to reflect the water deficit in the study area. It was found to be in close negative agreement with precipitation and 10 cm soil moisture; (3) in the Mongolian Plateau, TVDI presented a zonal distribution with changes in land use/land cover types, vegetation cover and latitude. The soil moisture is low in bare land, construction land and grassland. During 1981–2012, drought was widely spread throughout the plateau, and aridification was obvious in the study period. Vegetation degradation, overgrazing, and climate warming could be considered as the main reasons.

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Acknowledgements

The authors are grateful for the support by the National Key Basic Research and Development Program (973 Program) (Grant No. 2013CB429905-04), the Key Deployment Project of the Chinese Academy of Sciences (Grant No. KZZD-EW-08), the youth fund from the National Natural Science Foundation of China (Grant No. 41501477), the foundation of Chinese Academy of Forestry (Grant No. CAFYBB2016QB021), the special scientific research fund of forestry public welfare profession of China (Grant No. 201404304).

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Correspondence to Xiaoming Cao.

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Corresponding editor: Prashant K Srivastava

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Cao, X., Feng, Y. & Wang, J. Remote sensing monitoring the spatio-temporal changes of aridification in the Mongolian Plateau based on the general Ts-NDVI space, 1981–2012. J Earth Syst Sci 126, 58 (2017). https://doi.org/10.1007/s12040-017-0835-x

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Keywords

  • General Ts-NDVI space
  • aridification
  • Mongolian Plateau
  • remote sensing