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International Journal of Remote Sensing








Satellite image artefacts are features that appear in an image but not in the original imaged object and can negatively impact the interpretation of satellite data. Vertical artefacts are linear features oriented in the along-track direction of an image system and can present as either banding or striping; banding are features with a consistent width, and striping are features with inconsistent widths. This study used high-resolution data from DigitalGlobeʻs (now Maxar) WorldView-3 satellite collected at Lake Okeechobee, Florida (FL), on 30 August 2017. This study investigated the impact of vertical artefacts on both at-sensor radiance and a spectral index for an aquatic target as WorldView-3 was primarily designed as a land sensor. At-sensor radiance measured by six of WorldView-3ʻs eight spectral bands exhibited banding, more specifically referred to as non-uniformity, at a width corresponding to the multispectral detector sub-arrays that comprise the WorldView-3 focal plane. At-sensor radiance measured by the remaining two spectral bands, red and near-infrared (NIR) #1, exhibited striping. Striping in these spectral bands can be attributed to their time delay integration (TDI) settings at the time of image acquisition, which were optimized for land. The impact of vertical striping on a spectral index leveraging the red, red edge, and NIR spectral bands—referred to here as the NIR maximum chlorophyll index (MCINIR)—was investigated. Temporally similar imagery from the European Space Agencyʻs Sentinel-3 and Sentinel-2 satellites were used as baseline references of expected chlorophyll values across Lake Okeechobee as neither Sentinel-3 nor Sentinel-2 imagery showed striping. Striping was highly prominent in the MCINIR product generated using WorldView-3 imagery, as noise in the at-sensor radiance exceeded any signal of chlorophyll in the image. Adjusting the image acquisition parameters for future tasking of WorldView-3 or the functionally similar WorldView-2 satellite may alleviate these artefacts. To test this, an additional WorldView-3 image was acquired at Lake Okeechobee, FL, on 26 May 2021 in which the TDI settings and scan line rate were adjusted to improve the signal-to-noise ratio. While some evidence of non-uniformity remained, striping was no longer noticeable in the MCINIR product. Future image tasking over aquatic targets should employ these updated image acquisition parameters. Since the red and NIR #1 spectral bands are critical for inland and coastal water applications, archived images not collected using these updated settings may be limited in their potential for analysis of aquatic variables that require these two spectral bands to derive.


© 2022 The Author(s).

This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International (CC BY-NC-ND 4.0) License, which permits non-commercial re-use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited, and is not altered, transformed, or built upon in any way.

Original Publication Citation

Coffer, M. M., Whitman, P. J., Schaeffer, B. A., Hill, V., Zimmerman, R. C., Salls, W. B., Lebrasse, M. C., & Graybill, D. D. (2022). Vertical artifacts in high-resolution WorldView-2 and WorldView-3 satellite imagery of aquatic systems. International Journal of Remote Sensing, 43(4), 1199-1225.


0000-0001-8337-7441 (Hill, Victoria), 0000-0002-9399-4264 (Zimmerman, Richard)


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