Materials and methods

Description of Study Area


Universiti Putra Malaysia (UPM) is located in Serdang, Selangor with latitude of 2°59'31.20'' N and longitude of 101°42'37.72''. The academic institution covers an area of 937.370 hectares which accommodated with administration buildings, faculties, residential areas, research institutes, recreational and other facilities.

Equipments and Software


QuickBird is a high-resolution commercial earth-observation satellite, owned by DigitalGlobe. It was launched in 18th October 2001 from SLC-2W, Vandenberg Air Force Base, California, United States of America. This satellite was the first in a constellation of three satellites scheduled to be in orbit by 2008. QuickBird has the second highest resolution commercial imagery of the Earth after WorldView-1. It boast the largest image size and the greatest on-board storage capacity of any satellite. The satellite collects panchromatic (black & white) imagery at 60-70 centimeters resolution and multispectral imagery at 2.4- and 2.8 meter resolutions.

Details such as buildings and others are visible at this resolution. For this reason, the Quickbird image for UPM area was bought and used for analysis in this study.


ArcGIS is an integrated suite of professional GIS applications composed of three main software products: ArcView, ArcEditor, and ArcInfo. ArcGIS Desktop is the primary application used by GIS professionals to compile, author, and use geographic information and knowledge. It is available at three functional levelsArcView, ArcEditor, and ArcInfo. ArcGIS Desktop includes an integrated suite of comprehensive desktop applicationsArcMap, ArcCatalog, ArcToolbox, and ArcGlobe. Each application has a rich set of GIS tools and operators.

The latest version of ArcGIS Desktop is ArcGIS 9.3.


The materials and equipments that will be used in this study are:

  1. QuickBird Image of UPM
  2. Haga Altimeter
  3. Measuring Tape
  4. Diameter Tape
  5. HP IPAQ PDA Handheld
  6. Holux GPS Receiver

The software that will used for this study are:

  1. ArcGIS Desktop 9.3
  2. ArcPAD 7.1.1
  3. Microsoft Excel 2007

Data Acqusition

QuickBird image of UPM, Serdang was acquired via purchased from SkyShine Sdn. Bhd in 2008. Meanwhile, the digital layers of boundaries and roads in UPM were obtained from Taman Pertanian Universiti, UPM. These layers were in MapInfo Professional format (TAB). A conversion of these digital layers into shapefile is needed to be used in ArcGIS 9.3 software.

Screen Digitizing in ArcMap

Screen digitizing will be carried out to digitize trees, roads and boundaries on QuickBird image of UPM using ArcMap, a component of ArcGIS Desktop 9.3. After the digitizing process is done, they will be exported as shapefiles, ArcGIS format for layers. These shapefiles will be used for data analysis.

Ground Data Collection

There will be two types of ground data collection. They are trees' defects evaluation and trees' measurement. Examples of parameters of trees' defects evaluation are leaf crown ratio, tree hazard, foliage colour, and so on. Meanwhile, diameter breast height (DBH), crown spread and tree height are some of examples of tree measurement. The data will be collected manually using Trees' Defects Evaluation Form.

Development of Tree Database

Data from the field will be key in using Microsoft Excel 2007. They will be sorted according to tree defects parameters.

Development of Urban Trees Planning/Spatial Support System

Urban trees planning/spatial support system will be developed using Visual Basic for Application (VBA) which is part of ArcMap. VBA will be applied to customize and develop Graphic User Interface (GUI) which will accommodate the 'Trees Defects Evaluation Form' which is prior done manually. The system will comprise of tree defects characteristics, tree hazards and tree appraisal. The tree database which is in the form of Microsoft Excel 2007 will be linked to the system using VBA.

Accuracy Assessment

Accuracy assessment will be divided into two parts. They are tree number and hazard assessment. Tree number accuracy assessment will be carry out to compare the number of trees verify on the ground with the trees which are digitally digitized on ArcMap. Tree hazard accuracy assessment will be done by comparing the results of system (number of trees that are to removed, maintained or pruning) with ground verification.

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