Satellite Imagery News

©Khaled bin Sultan Living Oceans Foundation/Ken Marks

Global Reef Expedition: Mission to Tonga

. This scientific mission involved 20 participants from numerous organizations around the world, who worked alongside scientists representing the government in Tonga, to gather the highest quality data. They completed more than 500 benthic coral reef and fish surveys on SCUBA, and over 2,200 km2 of satellite imagery was collected and interpreted into high-resolution habitat and bathymetry maps. The ultimate goal of the Foundation’s research in Tonga was to provide scientists, managers, and stakeholders with information and recommendations that could be important for creating successful management

Photo credit: ©Khaled bin Sultan Living Oceans Foundation

The Global Reef Expedition: Kingdom of Tonga

activities with local schoolchildren and community members.On the Global Reef Expedition mission to Tonga, scientists conducted nearly 500 surveys of coral reefs and reef fish around three of Tonga’s island groups: Ha’apai, Vava’u, and Niua. They also collected over 2,200 km2 of satellite imagery to develop detailed habitat and bathymetric maps of the seafloor.The report released summarizes the Foundation’s findings from the research expedition along with recommendations for preserving Tonga’s coral reefs into the future.They found that coral reefs in the Kingdom of Tonga

Illustration by Natalie Renier, Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution

Currents Not Linked to New England Sea Level

also stronger than usual. Together with unusually high air pressure on the northeast coast, this lowers the average sea level. It’s wind and pressure that are driving both phenomena.”According to Piecuch, a study like this was not even possible until recently. For the past few decades, satellite imagery has given scientists a record of movement at the ocean’s surface, but has been unable to detect currents below the surface. Starting in 2004, however, an international team of scientists began maintaining a chain of instruments that stretch across the Atlantic between Florida and Morocco

EOMAP showcased its contribution to the world-first 3D habitat map of the Great Barrier Reef (GBR) at the International Forum on Satellite-Derived Bathymetry, SDB Day 2019 in Australia.

Making the Great Barrier Reef’s 3D Habitat Map

;t know exactly how much you have, then how do you know what to do?”The ambitious scope of this undertaking was made possible by recent advances in satellite-mapping technologies, environmental modelling and image classification methods.Using the European Space Agency Sentinel-2 platform satellite imagery, EOMAP applies its industry leading, proprietary technology to retrieve satellite-derived bathymetry (SDB) and sub-surface reflectance (SSR).The result of the SDB mapping is a 3D elevation model of the seafloor—one of the cornerstone data layers for the entire project.“Accurately

Photo courtesy of EOMAP

The Great Barrier Reef: 3D Habitat Map

;t know exactly how much you have, then how do you know what to do?”The ambitious scope of this undertaking was made possible by recent advances in satellite-mapping technologies, environmental modelling and image classification methods.Using the European Space Agency Sentinel-2 platform satellite imagery, EOMAP applies its industry leading, proprietary technology to retrieve satellite-derived bathymetry (SDB) and sub-surface reflectance (SSR).The result of the SDB mapping is a 3D elevation model of the seafloor—one of the cornerstone data layers for the entire project.“Accurately

Photo: TCarta Marine

UKHO Contracts with TCarta

Republic of Kiribati. Located in the Pacific Ocean, the island nation is threatened by rising sea levels.TCarta won the open bid for supply of Satellite Derived Bathymetry (SDB) to the UKHO to extract water depth measurements and seafloor classifications, including habitat types, from multispectral satellite imagery. In this project, TCarta is processing eight-band DigitalGlobe WorldView-2 and -3 data predominantly, as well as four-band WorldView-4 and GeoEye-1 data to measure depths down to 30 meters at a resolution of two meters.The Kiribati nation is comprised of 33 atoll islands and multiple reefs

Photo Courtesy USCG

Global Fishing Watch, USCG Examine Illegal Fishing

global efforts to improve fisheries management.Global Fishing Watch (https://globalfishingwatch.org) and CG RDC are exploring pathways to collaborate on relevant research activities, such as the establishment of analytical methodologies to evaluate open-source vessel movement data, catch data and satellite imagery, to advance international understanding on IUU fishing and its impacts.Such collaboration would look to generate deeper understanding of global patterns of vessel activity related to IUU fishing by fusing diverse open data sources and developing new intelligence on IUU fishing activities, such

TCarta will deploy machine learning and computer vision techniques to enhance satellite derived bathymetry in the littoral zone. (Image source: Copernicus Sentinel data 2018)

NSF Grant to Enhance Satellite-derived Bathymetry Technology

Marine geospatial products provider TCarta Marine has been awarded a research and development grant by the National Science Foundation (NSF) to enhance and automate multiple techniques for deriving seafloor depth measurements from optical satellite imagery. The ‘Project Trident’ research seeks to transform existing satellite derived bathymetry (SDB) techniques by leveraging machine learning and computer vision technology to enable accurate depth retrieval in variable water conditions.If successful, TCarta said, these enhanced bathymetric techniques will have positive impacts on operations

The 180-foot RV Lake Guardian is the largest research vessel in the EPA fleet and the largest research vessel operating on the Great Lakes. It has a berthing capacity of 41 people, including 14 crew members and 27 visiting scientists. (Photo: EPA)

EPA Launches Research Vessel to Monitor Lake Ontario

be evaluating nutrients, plankton, prey fish and predator fish. Smaller research boats will focus on near-shore activities such as evaluating nutrients and mussels, as well as performing algae research and diver surveys. The agencies will be using sophisticated equipment such as underwater cameras, satellite imagery, robotic gliders and underwater unmanned vehicles to better characterize and document the lake’s ecosystem.Once the year-long monitoring program on Lake Ontario is completed, a summary report of their findings will be available for public review.“We are fully dedicated to ensuring

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