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Title: Remote sensing of freshwater phytoplankton
Author: Charlton, Fergus
Awarding Body: University of Edinburgh
Current Institution: University of Edinburgh
Date of Award: 1998
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This study researches the potential for using hyperspectral remote sensing to identify the phytoplanktonic composition of a freshwater bloom. Six novel analytical techniques were developed to identify phytoplankton class from reflectance spectra. These techniques offer the water manager a variety of means to identify the dominant phytoplankton class in a target water body. Identification of phytoplankton class is possible because certain photosynthetic pigments contained within phytoplankton cells are taxonomically significant, being indicative of a particular class. The detection of these pigments can be used to identify the presence of a particular phytoplanktonic class in an aquatic system. It is possible to identify these pigments using optical methods because they exhibit unique spectral absorption signatures. Such pigment absorption features are manifest in the composite reflectance signature from water bodies as measured by remote sensing instruments. However, due to the presence of the spectral features from other photosynthetic pigments and the other optically active components of water bodies, extracting from reflectance spectra the spectral information pertaining to individual class marker pigments can be difficult. The phytoplankton class identification techniques presented in this study were developed using absorption and reflectance spectra from pure cultures of phytoplankton. The reflectance spectra were measured in the controlled environment of a laboratory based experimental tank designed for this study. The class identification techniques were tested on field and airborne reflectance spectra measured from a eutrophic inland lake.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available