Remotely sensed high resolution irrigated area mapping in India for 2000 to 2015

Anukesh Krishnankutty Ambika, Brian Wardlow, Vimal Mishra

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

134 Scopus citations


India is among the countries that uses a significant fraction of available water for irrigation. Irrigated area in India has increased substantially after the Green revolution and both surface and groundwater have been extensively used. Under warming climate projections, irrigation frequency may increase leading to increased irrigation water demands. Water resources planning and management in agriculture need spatially-explicit irrigated area information for different crops and different crop growing seasons. However, annual, high-resolution irrigated area maps for India for an extended historical record that can be used for water resources planning and management are unavailable. Using 250 m normalized difference vegetation index (NDVI) data from Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) and 56 m land use/land cover data, high-resolution irrigated area maps are developed for all the agroecological zones in India for the period of 2000-2015. The irrigated area maps were evaluated using the agricultural statistics data from ground surveys and were compared with the previously developed irrigation maps. High resolution (250 m) irrigated area maps showed satisfactory accuracy (R2 =0.95) and can be used to understand interannual variability in irrigated area at various spatial scales.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number160118
JournalScientific Data
StatePublished - Dec 20 2016

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Statistics and Probability
  • Information Systems
  • Education
  • Computer Science Applications
  • Statistics, Probability and Uncertainty
  • Library and Information Sciences


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