Online Drought Indicators and Indices

Soil Adjusted Vegetation Index (SAVI)


Index name: Soil Adjusted Vegetation Index (SAVI).

Ease of use: Red.

Origins: Developed by Huete at the University of Arizona, United States, in the late 1980s. The idea was to have a global model for monitoring soil and vegetation from remotely sensed data.

Characteristics: SAVI is similar to NDVI – spectral indices may be calibrated in such a way that the variations of soils are normalized and do not influence measurements of the vegetation canopy. These enhancements to NDVI are useful because SAVI accounts for variations in soils.

Input parameters: Remotely sensed data, which are then compared to known surface plots of various vegetation.

Applications: Useful for the monitoring of soils and vegetation.

Strengths: High-resolution and high-density data associated with remotely sensed data allow for very good spatial coverage.

Weaknesses: Calculations are complex, as is obtaining data to run operationally. A short period of record associated with the satellite data can hamper climate analyses.

Resources: The methodology and associated calculations are explained well in the literature.

Reference: Huete, A.R., 1988: A Soil-adjusted Vegetation Index (SAVI). Remote Sensing of Environment, 25(3):295–309.

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