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Proceedings Paper

Multispectral imagery, hyperspectral radiometry, and unmanned underwater vehicles: tools for the assessment of natural resources in coastal waters
Author(s): David K. Costello; Kendall L. Carder; Robert F. Chen; Thomas G. Peacock; N. Sandy Nettles
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Paper Abstract

In many coastal oceans of the world, the flora and fauna are under stress. In some areas, seagrasses, coral reefs, fish stocks, and marine mammals are disappearing at a rate great enough to capture the attention of, and in some cases, provoke action by local, national, and international governing bodies. The governmental concern and consequent action is most generally rooted in the economic consequences of the collapse of coastal ecosystems. In the United States, for example, some experts believe that the rapid decline of coral reef communities within coastal waters is irreversible. If correct, the economic impact on the local fisheries and tourism industries would be significant. Most scientists and government policy makers agree that remedial action is in order. The ability to make effective management decisions is hampered, however, by the convolution of the potential causes of the decline and by the lack of historical or even contemporary data quantifying the standing stock of the natural resource of concern. Without resource assessment, neither policy decisions intended to respond to ecological crises nor those intended to provide long-term management of coastal resources can be prudently made. This contribution presents a methodology designed to assess the standing stock of immobile coastal resources (eg. seagrasses and corals) at high spatial resolution utilizing a suite of optical instrumentation operating from unmanned underwater vehicles (UUVs) which exploits the multi-spectral albedo and fluorescence signatures of the flora and fauna.

Paper Details

Date Published: 21 April 1995
PDF: 9 pages
Proc. SPIE 2501, Visual Communications and Image Processing '95, (21 April 1995); doi: 10.1117/12.206747
Show Author Affiliations
David K. Costello, Univ. of South Florida (United States)
Kendall L. Carder, Univ. of South Florida (United States)
Robert F. Chen, Univ. of South Florida (United States)
Thomas G. Peacock, Univ. of South Florida (United States)
N. Sandy Nettles, Univ. of South Florida (United States)


Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 2501:
Visual Communications and Image Processing '95
Lance T. Wu, Editor(s)

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