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Chemical Effects on Vegetation Detectable in Optical Bands 350-2500 nm

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This paper reports on the examination of the spectral response of individual leaves of three common Canadian plant species poplar Populus deltoides, Populus trichocarpa, wheat Triticum aestivum, canola Brassica napus, which were subjected to fumigation with gaseous phase toxic industrial chemicals and chemicals precursor to chemical warfare agents TICs, such as ammonia NH3, sulphur dioxide SO2, hydrogen sulphide H2S, chlorine Cl2, and hydrogen cyanide HCN. Analysis of the data using vegetation indices showed that the TICs and environmental stresses result in diagnostic light reflectance data trends from healthy mature to highly stressed leaves, with marked differences in physiological and spectral responses detected for some combinations of species and TICs. Further analysis showed that combinations of specific reflectance indices could be used to distinguish NH3, SO2, Cl2 consistently across all three species. Findings at the leaf level suggest that both environmental stress and TIC treatments can be detectable within 48hrs and should last for an extended period, probably up to a week, and thus be possibly detectable from airbornespaceborne imagery, depending on the overpass or observation period. However the variability introduced from species to species that also enhances the TIC spectral trends would be a function of the landscape investigated and encompassed by a given data set or geographical area analyzed. The next step should involve a field trial.

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  • Forestry
  • Inorganic Chemistry
  • Atomic and Molecular Physics and Spectroscopy

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