NOAA Seminar Series: Mapping and monitoring turbidity in estuaries using remote sensing

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NOAA Seminar Series: Mapping and monitoring turbidity in estuaries using remote sensing

August 9, 2023 1:00 pm - 1:30 pm EDT

Title: Mapping and monitoring turbidity in estuaries using remote sensing and in-situ measurements

Speaker: Stephany Garcia, NOAA EPP/MSI CESSRST-II Fellow at SDSU

Date: August 9, 20223

Time: 1:00 PM ET

Venue: Virtual

Meeting Link :  meet.google.com/xjr-zfee-aet

Phone Number
(‪US‬)‪+1 219-321-0478‬
PIN: ‪651 945 406#‬

Learn more about the speaker


Satellite imagery of Southern California’s Tijuana River Outlet shows frequent turbid water plumes extending out into coastal water after storms and cross border flow events (Ayad et al., 2020). Turbid water has high concentrations of organic and inorganic materials that can carry harmful bacteria and pathogens (Warrick et al., 2012). In fresh and saline water systems, such as estuaries, water reflectance can reveal information about the biological productivity at different trophic states, benthic environment suppression, nutrient cycling, and the overall habitat quality for water-dependent organisms (Barbier et al., 2011; Topp et al., 2020). However, reflectance-based turbidity mapping is complicated by atmospheric conditions, clouds, and the reflectance of bottom materials in shallow water. Understanding the timing, frequency, and duration of turbid water events is often site-specific, because of regional climate, varying anthropogenic pressures, sediment loading rates, and geology (Elliott & McLusky, 2002). For my NERTO, a shallow water turbidity algorithm was used to identify turbidity hotspots in the tidal inland channels of TRNERR using the Sentinel-2 satellites. The goal was to quantify the accuracy of turbidity maps created from remote sensing by conducting Kayak Surveys and testing the water for suspended sediment concentrations (SSC) and Loss on Ignition (LOI). Initial findings revealed that ordering and receiving materials post-COVID was not possible in the course during a three-month NERTO period. Additionally, because of high contamination levels in the TJR Estuary, fieldwork was often prohibited. Moreover, because the data sondes we are using have 6+ sensors, equipment knowledge, and troubleshooting became an essential part of my NERTO experience



August 9
1:00 pm - 1:30 pm EDT
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NOAA Science Seminar Series