Submitted to: International Conference Remote Sensing for Marine and Costal Environments
Publication Type: Proceedings
Publication Acceptance Date: 4/22/2005
Publication Date: 5/16/2005
Citation: Ritchie, J.C. 2005. Remote sensing of suspended sediments. In: Proceedings of the Eight International Conference on Remote Sensing of Marine and Coastal Environments, May 17-19, 2005, Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada. p. 8-16. Interpretive Summary:
Technical Abstract: Suspended sediments are the most common pollutant of the surface waters in inland and coastal waters. Since the 1970's remote sensing techniques have been used to map and quantify suspended sediments in surface waters. Boat, aircraft, and satellite with optical sensors provide spatial and temporal data needed to understand and monitor changes in surface suspended sediments. Early techniques wer based on empirical algorithms developed from suspended sediment measurements made at the time the remote sesning data were collected. Empirical algorithms are still widely used to quantitatively determine suspended sediments, but the use of more physically based algorithms is expanding. This paper discusses the applications of these algorithms to estimate suspended sediments in surface waters. With recent and planned launches of satellites having improved spectral and spatial resolution sensors, greater application of remote sensing techniques to assess and monitor suspended sediments and other water quality parameter will be possible. Combining these remote sensing techiques with GIS and GPS should improve our abilities to assess the landscape and provide monitoring data to plan and follow clean-up efforts.