Identification of suspended sediment in coastal waters using airborne thematic mapper data

Michael B Collins, Charitha Pattiaratchi

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

27 Citations (Scopus)


Remotely sensed data were collected using an airborne Daedalus thematic mapper, flown at 4000 m, over Swansea Bay, northern Bristol Channel, U.K. The area is one of high tidal range and wave activity. Fifty-eight surface-water/sediment samples were collected from three vessels as concurrent ‘sea-truth’ data. Samples were analysed for suspended sediment concentration (SSC)

Regression equations are developed for SSC using data in the 450-520 nm (channel 2), 520-600 nm (channel 3), 605-625 nm (channel 4) and 630-690 nm (channel 5) spectral bands

Localized flow patterns are visible in the imagery and are identified using suspended material as the passive tracer. Such patterns cannot be identified in temporally averaged data collected from research vessels

It is concluded that airborne remote sensing can contribute to the understanding of the movement of water and sediments on continental shelves, when used in association with conventional oceanographic sampling techniques.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)635–657
Number of pages23
JournalInternational Journal of Remote Sensing.
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 1984
Externally publishedYes


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