We use cookies to ensure that we give you the best experience on our website. By continuing to browse this repository, you give consent for essential cookies to be used. You can read more about our Privacy and Cookie Policy.

Durham Research Online
You are in:

Catchment-scale mapping of surface grain size in gravel bed rivers using airborne digital imagery.

Carbonneau, P. E. and Lane, S. N. and Bergeron, N. E. (2004) 'Catchment-scale mapping of surface grain size in gravel bed rivers using airborne digital imagery.', Water resources research., 40 (7). W07202.


This study develops and assesses two methods for estimating median surface grain sizes using digital image processing from centimeter-resolution airborne imagery. Digital images with ground resolutions of 3 cm and 10 cm were combined with field calibration measurements to establish predictive relationships for grain size as a function of both local image texture and local image semivariance. Independently acquired grain size data were then used to assess the algorithm performance. Results showed that for the 3 cm imagery both local image semivariance and texture are highly sensitive to median grain size, with semivariance being a better predictor than image texture. However, in the case of 10 cm imagery, sensitivity of image semivariance and texture to grain size was poor, and this scale of imagery was found to be unsuitable for grain size estimation. This study therefore demonstrates that local image properties in very high resolution digital imagery allow for automated grain size measurement using image processing and remote sensing methods

Item Type:Article
Keywords:Fluvial grain size measurement, Airborne remote sensing, Digital image processing, Image semivariance, Image texture.
Full text:(VoR) Version of Record
Download PDF
Publisher Web site:
Publisher statement:© 2004 American Geophysical Union. Additional information: Carbonneau, P. E., Lane, S. N., Bergeron, N. E, (2004), 'Catchment-scale mapping of surface grain size in gravel bed rivers using airborne digital imagery', Water resources research, 40, W07202, 10.1029/2003WR002759 (DOI). To view the published open abstract, go to and enter the DOI.
Date accepted:No date available
Date deposited:24 March 2010
Date of first online publication:July 2004
Date first made open access:No date available

Save or Share this output

Look up in GoogleScholar