January 13, 2004
D. M. Fitzgerald, G. A. Zarillo & S. Johnston
satellite imagery are expected to be able to compensate for variable bottom type
and albedo, including mixtures of sand and rock outcrops. Tuning of multispectral
depth algorithms can be accomplished by comparison to the LIDAR surveys. Given
the spatial resolution multispectral imagery is approximately 4 m and it is expected
that the overall accuracy and resolution of spectral-based depths extraction will be
comparable to LIDAR survey methods, but at a small fraction of the cost.
Tidal inlets and tidal waterways serve as the entrance channel to many harbors and
shipping ports throughout the world. This is certainly true for the East and Gulf
Coasts of the United States where barrier chains and tidal inlets form much of the
coast. Many of world's tidal inlets are dredged on a regular basis and many others
will be modified with engineering structures. USACE is responsible for maintain-
ing 12,000 miles of navigable waterways and in 2001, the federal government spent
7.7 million to maintain its navigation channels (USACE, 2003). Potential savings
in channel maintenance costs and in the development of engineering plans are depen-
dent on efficient collection, analysis, and interpretation of wave, tide, sedimentologic,
and morphologic data. As described in this paper these needs are being met with
new equipment, new approaches to tidal inlet research using existing technology,
and innovative means of analyses.
The authors of this paper appreciate the financial and technical support provided
by the Coastal Inlets Research Program, USACE. Permission was granted by Head-
quarters, US Army Corps of Engineers, to publish this information.
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