A New Geostatistical Solution to Remote Sensing Image Downscaling

Qunming Wang, Wen Zhong Shi, Peter M. Atkinson, Eulogio Pardo-Igúzquiza

Research output: Journal article publicationJournal articleAcademic researchpeer-review

41 Citations (Scopus)


The availability of the panchromatic (PAN) band in remote sensing images gives birth to so-called image fusion techniques for increasing the spatial resolution of images to that of the PAN band. The spatial resolution of such spatially sharpened images, such as for the MODIS and Landsat sensors, however, may not be sufficient to provide the required detailed land-cover/land-use information. This paper proposes an area-to-point regression kriging (ATPRK)-based geostatistical solution to increase the spatial resolution of remote sensing images beyond that of any input images, including the PAN band. The new approach is a two-stage approach, including covariate downscaling and ATPRK-based image fusion. The new approach treats the PAN band as the covariate and takes advantages of its textural information. It explicitly accounts for the size of support, spatial correlation, and the point spread function of the sensor and has the characteristic of perfect coherence with the original coarse data. Moreover, the new downscaling approach can be extended readily by incorporating other ancillary information. The proposed approach was examined using both Landsat and MODIS images. The results show that it can produce more accurate sharpened images than four benchmark approaches.
Original languageEnglish
Article number7181666
Pages (from-to)386-396
Number of pages11
JournalIEEE Transactions on Geoscience and Remote Sensing
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2016


  • Area-to-point regression kriging (ATPRK)
  • downscaling
  • geostatistics
  • image fusion
  • Landsat Enhanced Thematic Mapper
  • Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS)

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering
  • General Earth and Planetary Sciences


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