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Impact Assessment of Missing Data in Model Predictions for Earth Observation Applications

Francisco Mena; Diego Arenas; Marcela Charfuelan Oliva; Marlon Nuske; Andreas Dengel
In: Proceedings of the IEEE International Geoscience and Remote Sensing Symposium 2024. IEEE International Geoscience and Remote Sensing Symposium (IGARSS-2024), July 7-12, Athens, Greece, IEEE GRSS, IEEE, 2024.


Earth observation (EO) applications involving complex and heterogeneous data sources are commonly approached with machine learning models. However, there is a common assumption that data sources will be persistently available. Different situations could affect the availability of EO sources, like noise, clouds, or satellite mission failures. In this work, we assess the impact of missing temporal and static EO sources in trained models across four datasets with classification and regression tasks. We compare the predictive quality of different methods and find that some are naturally more robust to missing data. The Ensemble strategy, in particular, achieves a prediction robustness up to 100%. We evidence that missing scenarios are significantly more challenging in regression than classification tasks. Finally, we find that the optical view is the most critical view when it is missing individually.


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