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Multisensor monitoring of plume dynamics in the north-western Mediterranean

Gade, M.; Barale, V.; Snaith, H.M.. 2003 Multisensor monitoring of plume dynamics in the north-western Mediterranean. Journal of Coastal Conservation, 9 (1). 91-96.

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Abstract/Summary

We used data from various space-borne sensors to monitor the marine ecosystem in the northwestern Mediterranean Sea, at the Costa Dorada, between the City of Barcelona and the estuary of the river Ebro. The aim of this study was to demonstrate that the combination of different remote sensing data (acquired at different electromagnetic frequencies) allows for an improved monitoring system, in particular for a better monitoring of the marine ecosystem and, hence, a better coastal zone management. We present remote sensing data acquired by the Synthetic Aperture Radar (SAR) and the Along-Track Scanning Radiometer (ATSR) aboard the Second European Remote Sensing Satellite (ERS-2), and by the Sea-viewing Wide Field-of-view Sensor (SeaWiFS) on the SeaStar satellite. By combining the different data we are able to overcome specific drawbacks of the single sensors, like an insufficient temporal coverage, or a strong dependence on weather and daylight conditions. Within the study area two main features have been selected as examples, which are well visible on many of the analysed images. The first one exhibits a higher load of chlorophyll-a and surface-active compounds and a lower sea surface temperature (SST), which is likely to be caused by the plume of the river Llobregat, southwest of Barcelona. It can clearly be seen from the imagery how the river plume is driven along the coast by the local currents. The second feature can be related to cooling water being released from a nuclear power plant and causing turbulence in the water body, which in turn gives rise to signatures visible on the ERS-SAR imagery.

Item Type: Publication - Article
ISSN: 1400-0350
Date made live: 27 Jul 2005 +0 (UTC)
URI: http://nora.nerc.ac.uk/id/eprint/116339

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