RSD is investigating the use of Thermal imagery for shoreline mapping. In 2005, ITRES' Thermal Aiborne Broadband Imager(TABI) was installed on a NOAA twin otter. Thermal data was acquired along a 15km segment of beach along Monterey, CA. The TABI is a broadband push broom imager that collects data between 8 to 12 nanometers in one band. One meter TABI imagery was acquired during Mean High Water (MHW) at a flying height of 1,200 ft (359 m) at 115 knots.
During the acquisition of the thermal imagery, a ground crew collected kinematic GPS along the shoreline and at discrete transects along the beach. The delineation of shoreline was based on beach slope and wave action during the course of the data acquisition and the perpendicular transects began at the zone of breaking waves and extended landward to the maximum extent of the swash zone. While in the field, this data was post-processed relative to a National Geodetic Survey tidal benchmark that was within one kilometer of the study area.
The land/water interfance was extracted from the TABI data and compared to the kinematic shoreline. Prelimary results indicate that this technology shows promise for extracting a shoreline at a known stage of tide.