Texture

Stay organized with collections Save and categorize content based on your preferences.

Earth Engine has several special methods for estimating spatial texture. When the image is discrete valued (not floating point), you can use image.entropy() to compute the entropy in a neighborhood:

Code Editor (JavaScript)

// Load a high-resolution NAIP image.
var image = ee.Image('USDA/NAIP/DOQQ/m_3712213_sw_10_1_20140613');

// Zoom to San Francisco, display.
Map.setCenter(-122.466123, 37.769833, 17);
Map.addLayer(image, {max: 255}, 'image');

// Get the NIR band.
var nir = image.select('N');

// Define a neighborhood with a kernel.
var square = ee.Kernel.square({radius: 4});

// Compute entropy and display.
var entropy = nir.entropy(square);
Map.addLayer(entropy,
             {min: 1, max: 5, palette: ['0000CC', 'CC0000']},
             'entropy');

Note that the NIR band is scaled to 8-bits prior to calling entropy() since the entropy computation takes discrete valued inputs. The non-zero elements in the kernel specify the neighborhood.

Another way to measure texture is with a gray-level co-occurrence matrix (GLCM). Using the image and kernel from the previous example, compute the GLCM-based contrast as follows:

Code Editor (JavaScript)

// Compute the gray-level co-occurrence matrix (GLCM), get contrast.
var glcm = nir.glcmTexture({size: 4});
var contrast = glcm.select('N_contrast');
Map.addLayer(contrast,
             {min: 0, max: 1500, palette: ['0000CC', 'CC0000']},
             'contrast');

Many measures of texture are output by image.glcm(). For a complete reference on the outputs, see Haralick et al. (1973) and Conners et al. (1984).

Local measures of spatial association such as Geary’s C (Anselin 1995) can be computed in Earth Engine using image.neighborhoodToBands(). Using the image from the previous example:

Code Editor (JavaScript)

// Create a list of weights for a 9x9 kernel.
var row = [1, 1, 1, 1, 1, 1, 1, 1, 1];
// The center of the kernel is zero.
var centerRow = [1, 1, 1, 1, 0, 1, 1, 1, 1];
// Assemble a list of lists: the 9x9 kernel weights as a 2-D matrix.
var rows = [row, row, row, row, centerRow, row, row, row, row];
// Create the kernel from the weights.
// Non-zero weights represent the spatial neighborhood.
var kernel = ee.Kernel.fixed(9, 9, rows, -4, -4, false);

// Convert the neighborhood into multiple bands.
var neighs = nir.neighborhoodToBands(kernel);

// Compute local Geary's C, a measure of spatial association.
var gearys = nir.subtract(neighs).pow(2).reduce(ee.Reducer.sum())
             .divide(Math.pow(9, 2));
Map.addLayer(gearys,
             {min: 20, max: 2500, palette: ['0000CC', 'CC0000']},
             "Geary's C");

For an example of using neighborhood standard deviation to compute image texture, see the Statistics of Image Neighborhoods page.