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IMAFD: An Interpretable Multi-stage Approach to Flood Detection from time series Multispectral Data

Research output: Working paperPreprint

Publication date13/05/2024
<mark>Original language</mark>English


In this paper, we address two critical challenges in the domain of flood detection: the computational expense of large-scale time series change detection and the lack of interpretable decision-making processes on explainable AI (XAI). To overcome these challenges, we proposed an interpretable multi-stage approach to flood detection, IMAFD has been proposed. It provides an automatic, efficient and interpretable solution suitable for large-scale remote sensing tasks and offers insight into the decision-making process. The proposed IMAFD approach combines the analysis of the dynamic time series image sequences to identify images with possible flooding with the static, within-image semantic segmentation. It combines anomaly detection (at both image and pixel level) with semantic segmentation. The flood detection problem is addressed through four stages: (1) at a sequence level: identifying the suspected images (2) at a multi-image level: detecting change within suspected images (3) at an image level: semantic segmentation of images into Land, Water or Cloud class (4) decision making. Our contributions are two folder. First, we efficiently reduced the number of frames to be processed for dense change detection by providing a multi-stage holistic approach to flood detection. Second, the proposed semantic change detection method (stage 3) provides human users with an interpretable decision-making process, while most of the explainable AI (XAI) methods provide post hoc explanations. The evaluation of the proposed IMAFD framework was performed on three datasets, WorldFloods, RavAEn and MediaEval. For all the above datasets, the proposed framework demonstrates a competitive performance compared to other methods offering also interpretability and insight.