Airborne Data

Airborne remote sensing flight surveys are conducted by the NEON project to collect quantitative information on land cover and changes to ecological structure and chemistry, including the presence and effects of invasive species across landscapes 100-300km2 surrounding NEON sites.

Flight data from 2013-2017 are now available upon request

Annual flight plans from 2013-2017

This downloadable workbook includes the NEON project's annual planned flights for the Airborne Observation Platform (AOP) from 2013-2017. This information is intended to provide researchers an understanding of when we intend to collect airborne data as well as an idea of what data are already available for download. Please note that actual date ranges for data collection may vary from the information in this document as result of weather conditions and technical issues. Data become available by request as they are processed.

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Types of data

Data are collected during peak greenness at each field site and include the following: 

Lidar data

  • DSM (Digital Surface Model; full mosaic)
  • DTM (Digital Terrain Model; full mosaic)
  • CHM (Canopy Height Model; full mosaic)
  • Slope and Aspect (full mosaics)
  • Classified point clouds (points classified as ground, building, vegetation, and unclassified; 1 km2 tiles)
  • Unclassified point clouds (points by flight line)
  • KML (site and flight line boundaries)
  • Full waveform data

Hyperspectral data

  • Surface reflectance, recorded across 426 narrow spectral bands extending from 380 to 2510 nm with a spectral sampling of five nm. Vegetation indices including NDVI, EVI, ARVI, Xanthophyll, Lignin, fPAR (fractional Photosynthetically Active Radiation) and LAI (Leaf Area Index)

Camera data

  • Orthorectified digital photographs
  • Camera mosaic

Field data

  • ASD Spectral Data

* Please note that much of the data currently available were collected as part of Engineering Flight Campaigns, they are considered "engineering quality" and may not have sufficient QA/QC to meet all users' needs.

Requesting airborne data

NEON airborne data are freely available. Depending on the type of data you request, we will either provide a user account for you to access an online repository of airborne data or we may send you a hard drive of the data. Please note that we are constantly adding new datasets to our online repository and once you have an account, you will be able to explore and download data as they become available.

Request airborne data

Other resources

2016 Camera Metadata

We've generated kml files that include lower resolution camera data from a subset of 2016 field site surveys. Looking at these files in Google Earth can help data users 1) better understand the extent of our flight surveys, 2) quickly view flight conditions for available data and 3) see a visual index of camera image IDs.

Sample of Airborne Data

These sample data represent a 250 x 250 m square area which encompasses a single field plot from SJER - San Joaquin Experimental Range in the Pacific Southwest (D17). The sample includes all AOP products which are currently available.