Satellite image classification is a challenging problem that lies at the crossroads of remote sensing, computer vision, and machine learning. Due to the high variability inherent in satellite data, most of the current object classification approaches are not suitable for handling satellite datasets. The progress of satellite image analytics has also been inhibited by the lack of a single labeled high-resolution dataset with multiple class labels. In a preliminary version of this work, we introduced two new high resolution satellite imagery datasets (SAT-4 and SAT-6) and proposed DeepSat framework for classification based on "handcrafted" features and a deep belief network (DBN). The present paper is an extended version, we present an end-to-end framework leveraging an improved architecture that augments a convolutional neural network (CNN) with handcrafted features (instead of using DBN-based architecture) for classification. Our framework, having access to fused spatial information obtained from handcrafted features as well as CNN feature maps, have achieved accuracies of 99.90% and 99.84% respectively, on SAT-4 and SAT-6, surpassing all the other state-of-the-art results. A statistical analysis based on Distribution Separability Criterion substantiates the robustness of our approach in learning better representations for satellite imagery.
Machine learning has proven to be useful in classification and segmentation of images. In this paper, we evaluate a training methodology for pixel-wise segmentation on high resolution satellite images using progressive growing of generative adversarial networks. We apply our model to segmenting building rooftops and compare these results to conventional methods for rooftop segmentation. We present our findings using the SpaceNet version 2 dataset. Progressive GAN training achieved a test accuracy of 93% compared to 89% for traditional GAN training.
Deep Learning (DL) methods have been transforming computer vision with innovative adaptations to other domains including climate change. For DL to pervade Science and Engineering (S&E) applications where risk management is a core component, well-characterized uncertainty estimates must accompany predictions. However, S&E observations and model-simulations often follow heavily skewed distributions and are not well modeled with DL approaches, since they usually optimize a Gaussian, or Euclidean, likelihood loss. Recent developments in Bayesian Deep Learning (BDL), which attempts to capture uncertainties from noisy observations, aleatoric, and from unknown model parameters, epistemic, provide us a foundation. Here we present a discrete-continuous BDL model with Gaussian and lognormal likelihoods for uncertainty quantification (UQ). We demonstrate the approach by developing UQ estimates on `DeepSD', a super-resolution based DL model for Statistical Downscaling (SD) in climate applied to precipitation, which follows an extremely skewed distribution. We find that the discrete-continuous models outperform a basic Gaussian distribution in terms of predictive accuracy and uncertainty calibration. Furthermore, we find that the lognormal distribution, which can handle skewed distributions, produces quality uncertainty estimates at the extremes. Such results may be important across S&E, as well as other domains such as finance and economics, where extremes are often of significant interest. Furthermore, to our knowledge, this is the first UQ model in SD where both aleatoric and epistemic uncertainties are characterized.
The impacts of climate change are felt by most critical systems, such as infrastructure, ecological systems, and power-plants. However, contemporary Earth System Models (ESM) are run at spatial resolutions too coarse for assessing effects this localized. Local scale projections can be obtained using statistical downscaling, a technique which uses historical climate observations to learn a low-resolution to high-resolution mapping. Depending on statistical modeling choices, downscaled projections have been shown to vary significantly terms of accuracy and reliability. The spatio-temporal nature of the climate system motivates the adaptation of super-resolution image processing techniques to statistical downscaling. In our work, we present DeepSD, a generalized stacked super resolution convolutional neural network (SRCNN) framework for statistical downscaling of climate variables. DeepSD augments SRCNN with multi-scale input channels to maximize predictability in statistical downscaling. We provide a comparison with Bias Correction Spatial Disaggregation as well as three Automated-Statistical Downscaling approaches in downscaling daily precipitation from 1 degree (~100km) to 1/8 degrees (~12.5km) over the Continental United States. Furthermore, a framework using the NASA Earth Exchange (NEX) platform is discussed for downscaling more than 20 ESM models with multiple emission scenarios.
We investigate the use of Deep Neural Networks for the classification of image datasets where texture features are important for generating class-conditional discriminative representations. To this end, we first derive the size of the feature space for some standard textural features extracted from the input dataset and then use the theory of Vapnik-Chervonenkis dimension to show that hand-crafted feature extraction creates low-dimensional representations which help in reducing the overall excess error rate. As a corollary to this analysis, we derive for the first time upper bounds on the VC dimension of Convolutional Neural Network as well as Dropout and Dropconnect networks and the relation between excess error rate of Dropout and Dropconnect networks. The concept of intrinsic dimension is used to validate the intuition that texture-based datasets are inherently higher dimensional as compared to handwritten digits or other object recognition datasets and hence more difficult to be shattered by neural networks. We then derive the mean distance from the centroid to the nearest and farthest sampling points in an n-dimensional manifold and show that the Relative Contrast of the sample data vanishes as dimensionality of the underlying vector space tends to infinity.
Satellite image classification is a challenging problem that lies at the crossroads of remote sensing, computer vision, and machine learning. Due to the high variability inherent in satellite data, most of the current object classification approaches are not suitable for handling satellite datasets. The progress of satellite image analytics has also been inhibited by the lack of a single labeled high-resolution dataset with multiple class labels. The contributions of this paper are twofold - (1) first, we present two new satellite datasets called SAT-4 and SAT-6, and (2) then, we propose a classification framework that extracts features from an input image, normalizes them and feeds the normalized feature vectors to a Deep Belief Network for classification. On the SAT-4 dataset, our best network produces a classification accuracy of 97.95% and outperforms three state-of-the-art object recognition algorithms, namely - Deep Belief Networks, Convolutional Neural Networks and Stacked Denoising Autoencoders by ~11%. On SAT-6, it produces a classification accuracy of 93.9% and outperforms the other algorithms by ~15%. Comparative studies with a Random Forest classifier show the advantage of an unsupervised learning approach over traditional supervised learning techniques. A statistical analysis based on Distribution Separability Criterion and Intrinsic Dimensionality Estimation substantiates the effectiveness of our approach in learning better representations for satellite imagery.
Learning sparse feature representations is a useful instrument for solving an unsupervised learning problem. In this paper, we present three labeled handwritten digit datasets, collectively called n-MNIST. Then, we propose a novel framework for the classification of handwritten digits that learns sparse representations using probabilistic quadtrees and Deep Belief Nets. On the MNIST and n-MNIST datasets, our framework shows promising results and significantly outperforms traditional Deep Belief Networks.