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Proceedings Paper

Extraction of tidal channel networks from airborne scanning laser altimetry and aerial photography
Author(s): David C. Mason; Hai-Jing Wang; Bharat Lohani
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Paper Abstract

The study of the morphodynamics of tidal channel networks is important because of their role in tidal propagation and the evolution of salt-marshes and tidal flats. Channel dimensions range from tens of meters wide and meters deep near the low water mark to only 20-30cm wide and 20cm deep for the smallest channels on the marshes. The conventional method of measuring the networks is cumbersome, involving manual digitizing of aerial photographs. This paper describes a semi-automatic knowledge-based network extraction method that is being implemented to work using airborne scanning laser altimetery. The channels exhibit a width variation of several orders of magnitude, making an approach based on multi-scale line detection difficult. The processing therefore uses multi-scale edge detection to detect channel edges, then associates adjacent anti-parallel edges together to form channels uing a distance-with-destination transform. Breaks in the networks are repaired by extending channel ends in the direction of their ends to join with nearby channels, using domain knowledge that flow paths should proceed downhill and that nay network fragment should be joined to a nearby fragment so as to connect eventually to the open sea.

Paper Details

Date Published: 13 March 2003
PDF: 8 pages
Proc. SPIE 4885, Image and Signal Processing for Remote Sensing VIII, (13 March 2003); doi: 10.1117/12.463200
Show Author Affiliations
David C. Mason, Univ. of Reading (United Kingdom)
Hai-Jing Wang, Univ. of Reading (United Kingdom)
Bharat Lohani, Banaras Hindu Univ. (India)


Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 4885:
Image and Signal Processing for Remote Sensing VIII
Sebastiano B. Serpico, Editor(s)

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