State Key Laboratory of Information Engineering in Surveying, Mapping, and Remote Sensing, Wuhan University, 129 Luoyu Road, Hubei 430079, China
Copyright © 2011 Yanfei Zhong and Liangpei Zhang. This is an open access article distributed under the
Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.
A new fuzzy clustering algorithm based on clonal selection theory from artificial immune systems (AIS), namely, FCSA, is proposed to obtain the optimal clustering result of land cover classification without a priori assumptions on the number of clusters. FCSA can adaptively find the optimal number of clusters and is designed as a two-layer system: the classification layer and the optimization layer. The classification layer of FCSA, inspired by clonal selection theory, generates the optimal classification result with a fixed cluster number by utilizing the clone, mutation, and selection of immune operators. The optimization layer of FCSA evaluates the optimal solutions according to performance measures for cluster validity and then adjusts the cluster number to output the final optimal cluster number. Two experiments with different types of image evince that FCSA not only finds the optimal number of clusters, but also consistently outperforms the traditional clustering algorithms, such as K-means and Fuzzy C-means. Hence, FCSA provides an effective option for performing the task of land cover classification.