The application of remote sensing in open moorland soil erosion studies : a case study of Glaisdale Moor, northern England
The potential of remote sensing in upland soil erosion studies has been examined on Glaisdale Moor, North Yorkshire Moors. The study considers four different remote sensing sources, viz. sequential air photographs, ground radiometry, Landsat Thematic Mapper (TM) and SPOT simulation. Sequential air photographs have been interpreted in order to elucidate the land use/land cover changes and the drainage development and associated erosion problems in the region. A series of statistical analyses were employed in an effort to establish the relationships between the different spectral variables and the soil/ground variables. Attempts have also been made to evaluate the spectral separability performance of the Ground radiometer, the Landsat TM and the SPOT simulation wave bands. The Landsat TM and the SPOT simulation imagery have been further analysed in order to gather information about the best band and band combinations that would be required to optimize the discrimination of moorland surface types including eroded areas. Digital image processing of the Landsat TM and the SPOT simulation subscene for Glaisdale Moor was performed using the DIAD image processing system. The land use/land cover classification information derived from the air photographs, the Landsat TM and the SPOT simulation, has been used as an input into a soil loss prediction model (USLE) to predict the soil erosion rate of the study area. Of the various remote sensing systems used, air photographs and TM data proved the most useful in this area.