Two scientific papers have just been published describing the use of remote sensing for the early detection of Xylella fastidiosa symptoms and for monitoring and estimating the damage caused by the infections.
Both studies took advantage of the two-year dataset collected in the Xf-infected area in southern Italy (see https://www.nature.com/articles/s41477-018-0189-7) in the framework of both EU H2020 projects.
The first paper entitled “Detection of Xylella fastidiosa infection symptoms with airborne multispectral and thermal imagery: Assessing bandset reduction performance from hyperspectral analysis” investigated whether a sensor with a moderate number of spectral bands could still pick up the previsual and early symptoms of X. fastidiosa infection that can be detected using hyperspectral sensors. The results indicate that multispectral and thermal cameras could contribute to the monitoring of large Xylella fastidiosa infected provided the bandsets are carefully selected based on the sensitivity of the spectral bands to the physiological changes occurring in Xylella-infected vegetation.
The second paper entitled “Monitoring the incidence of Xylella fastidiosa infection in olive orchards using ground-based evaluations, airborne imaging spectroscopy and Sentinel-2 time series through 3-D radiative transfer modelling” uses machine learning with satellite images to test monitoring the damage caused by Xf infections across large areas.
Results proved that Sentinel-2 imagery can form the basis for operational vegetation damage monitoring worldwide, i.e. to detect anomalies in vegetation health.
These investigations were carried out by an international multidisciplinary team comprising:
European Commission (EC), Joint Research Centre (JRC),
Directorate D-Sustainable Resources Instituto de Agricultura Sostenible (IAS), Consejo Superior de Investigaciones Científicas (CSIC), Córdoba, Spain
School of Agriculture and Food, Faculty of Veterinary and Agricultural Sciences (FVAS), University of Melbourne, Melbourne, Victoria, Australia University of Melbourne, Melbourne, Victoria, Australia
Department of Infrastructure Engineering, Melbourne School of Engineering (MSE), University of Melbourne, Melbourne, Victoria, Australia
Department of Geography, Swansea University, United Kingdom
Institute of Geography and Geoecology (IFGG), Karlsruhe Institute of Technology (KIT), Karlsruhe, Germany
CNR, Istituto per la Protezione Sostenibile delle Piante (IPSP), Bari, Italy