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Summary of Proposal COA2984


Monitoring of the water-area variations of Dongting Lake in China with TerraSAR-X images

Investigator difei, shi - hunan institute of science and technology, department of construction and engineering
Team Member
doctor rong, xu - hunan institute of science and technology, department of construction and engineering
Ph.D. shun, zhu - hunan institude of science and technology, department of construction and engineering

The water-area variations of large lake are affected by both long-term climate change and short-term localized human activities. For lake management, it is essential to actively monitor a wide range of lake parameter including the physical, chemical, and biological properties of lake water, water-level change, industrial development near the river, water disposal and other contamination etc. It is the purpose of this study to demonstrate, with Dongting Lake as an example, the effectiveness of using the spaceborne radar TerraSAR-X images for multi-year Dongting Lake water area and level variation monitoring. The greatest environmental problem for Dongting Lake is the rapid sedimentation. This fact causes difficulties for surface transportation and diminishes the lake’s capacity for water storage and flood control. In this study, we apply the satellite remote sensing technique to actively monitor the dynamic change of surface water area of Dongting Lake. It provides repeat coverage at a relatively high spatial resolution and is usually less costly and time-consuming than aerial photography survey for large geographic areas, especially in the rural areas. In this study, we also focus on the water area variation of Dongting Lake from 2005 to 2015. We apply a chain of image processing algorithm to obtain the water area from TerraSAR-X images. Since the shoreline and the lake bathymetry are not available, we cannot directly estimate the water-storage change using the surface water-area change from the TerraSAR-X images measurement. To overcome this, we combine the water level data at a shoreline station with the water area from TerraSAR-X images to establish the relationship between the two. A fitting curve is given so that water storage change can be estimated from a 2-D SAR image analysis. This research is funded by National Natural Science Foundation (44673249).

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