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A method for semi-automated objective quantification of linear bedforms from multi-scale Digital Elevation Models

A method for semi-automated objective quantification of linear bedforms from multi-scale Digital Elevation Models
A method for semi-automated objective quantification of linear bedforms from multi-scale Digital Elevation Models
The increasing availability of large, detailed digital representations of the Earth's surface demands the application of objective and quantitative analyses. Given recent advances in the understanding of the mechanisms of formation of linear bedform features from a range of environments, objective measurement of their wavelength, orientation, crest and trough positions, height and asymmetry is highly desirable. These parameters are also of use when determining observation-based parameters for use in many applications such as numerical modelling, surface classification and sediment transport pathway analysis. Here, we (1) adapt and extend extant techniques to provide a suite of semi-automatic tools which calculate crest orientation, wavelength, height, asymmetry direction and asymmetry ratios of bedforms, and then (2) undertake sensitivity tests on: synthetic data; increasingly complex seabeds; and a very large scale (39,000?km2) aeolian dune system. The automated results arecompared with traditional, manually-derived, measurements at each stage. This new approach successfully analyses different types of topographic data (from aeolian and marine environments) from a range of sources, with tens of millions of data points being processed in a semi-automated and objective manner within minutes rather than hours or days. The results from these analyses show there is significant variability in all measurable parameters in what might otherwise be considered uniform bedform fields. For example, the dunes of the Rub’ al Khali on the Arabian peninsula are shown to exhibit deviations in dimensions from global trends. Morphological and dune asymmetry analysis of the Rub’ al Khali suggests parts of the sand sea may be adjusting to a changed wind regime from that during their formation 100 to 10?ka BP.
bedforms, sand dunes, objective measurement, semi-automated, Fourier
0197-9337
221-236
Cazenave, P.
374bd8a6-ce49-4a46-a3a2-888f28462094
Dix, J.K.
efbb0b6e-7dfd-47e1-ae96-92412bd45628
Lambkin, D.
087c3504-4cb1-4a37-9a2a-8ffb019e5b99
McNeill, L.C.
1fe6a1e0-ca1a-4b6f-8469-309d0f9de0cf
Cazenave, P.
374bd8a6-ce49-4a46-a3a2-888f28462094
Dix, J.K.
efbb0b6e-7dfd-47e1-ae96-92412bd45628
Lambkin, D.
087c3504-4cb1-4a37-9a2a-8ffb019e5b99
McNeill, L.C.
1fe6a1e0-ca1a-4b6f-8469-309d0f9de0cf

Cazenave, P., Dix, J.K., Lambkin, D. and McNeill, L.C. (2013) A method for semi-automated objective quantification of linear bedforms from multi-scale Digital Elevation Models. Earth Surface Processes and Landforms, 38 (3), 221-236. (doi:10.1002/esp.3269).

Record type: Article

Abstract

The increasing availability of large, detailed digital representations of the Earth's surface demands the application of objective and quantitative analyses. Given recent advances in the understanding of the mechanisms of formation of linear bedform features from a range of environments, objective measurement of their wavelength, orientation, crest and trough positions, height and asymmetry is highly desirable. These parameters are also of use when determining observation-based parameters for use in many applications such as numerical modelling, surface classification and sediment transport pathway analysis. Here, we (1) adapt and extend extant techniques to provide a suite of semi-automatic tools which calculate crest orientation, wavelength, height, asymmetry direction and asymmetry ratios of bedforms, and then (2) undertake sensitivity tests on: synthetic data; increasingly complex seabeds; and a very large scale (39,000?km2) aeolian dune system. The automated results arecompared with traditional, manually-derived, measurements at each stage. This new approach successfully analyses different types of topographic data (from aeolian and marine environments) from a range of sources, with tens of millions of data points being processed in a semi-automated and objective manner within minutes rather than hours or days. The results from these analyses show there is significant variability in all measurable parameters in what might otherwise be considered uniform bedform fields. For example, the dunes of the Rub’ al Khali on the Arabian peninsula are shown to exhibit deviations in dimensions from global trends. Morphological and dune asymmetry analysis of the Rub’ al Khali suggests parts of the sand sea may be adjusting to a changed wind regime from that during their formation 100 to 10?ka BP.

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More information

Accepted/In Press date: April 2012
Published date: 15 March 2013
Keywords: bedforms, sand dunes, objective measurement, semi-automated, Fourier
Organisations: Geology & Geophysics

Identifiers

Local EPrints ID: 339057
URI: https://eprints.soton.ac.uk/id/eprint/339057
ISSN: 0197-9337
PURE UUID: 14c0b7de-5702-424c-9243-bb9591931c5a

Catalogue record

Date deposited: 22 May 2012 09:19
Last modified: 18 Jul 2017 05:55

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