Rice yield estimation through assimilating satellite data into a crop simumlation model

N. T. Son, C. F. Chen, C. R. Chen, L. Y. Chang, S. H. Chiang

Research output: Contribution to journalConference articlepeer-review

9 Scopus citations


Rice is globally the most important food crop, feeding approximately half of the world's population, especially in Asia where around half of the world's poorest people live. Thus, advanced spatiotemporal information of rice crop yield during crop growing season is critically important for crop management and national food policy making. The main objective of this study was to develop an approach to integrate remotely sensed data into a crop simulation model (DSSAT) for rice yield estimation in Taiwan. The data assimilation was processed to integrate biophysical parameters into DSSAT model for rice yield estimation using the particle swarm optimization (PSO) algorithm. The cost function was constructed based on the differences between the simulated leaf area index (LAI) and MODIS LAI, and the optimization process starts from an initial parameterization and accordingly adjusts parameters (e.g., planting date, planting population, and fertilizer amount) in the crop simulation model. The fitness value obtained from the cost function determined whether the optimization algorithm had reached the optimum input parameters using a user-defined tolerance. The results of yield estimation compared with the government's yield statistics indicated the root mean square error (RMSE) of 11.7% and mean absolute error of 9.7%, respectively. This study demonstrated the applicability of satellite data assimilation into a crop simulation model for rice yield estimation, and the approach was thus proposed for crop yield monitoring purposes in the study region.


  • Crop simulation model
  • Data assimilation
  • Remote sensing
  • Rice yield


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