Satellite-Derived Bathymetry in Support of Maritime Archaeological Research—VENμS Imagery of Caesarea Maritima, Israel, as a Case Study

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Abstract

Deriving bathymetry by means of multispectral satellite imagery proves to be a replicable method, offering high-resolution coverage over large areas while keeping costs low. Maritime archaeologists often require bathymetric mapping at a high resolution and with a large spatial coverage. In this paper, we demonstrate the implementation of SDB in maritime archaeology using high-resolution (5 m/pixel) data from Vegetation and Environment monitoring on a New Micro-Satellite (VENμS) imagery. We focus on the area of the Roman harbour of Sebastos, located at Caesarea Maritima along the Israeli coast of the Eastern Mediterranean. For extracting SDB, we take an empirical approach, which is based on the integration of satellite imagery and sonar depth measurements, resulting in a blue-green band ratio algorithm that provides reliable results up to a water depth of 17 m. Comparison with in situ depth measurements yielded an RMSE of 0.688 m. The SDB mapping is complemented by satellite-based identification of above- and below-water rocks. The presented approach can readily be replicated in other regions using various types of multispectral satellite imagery, particularly when only coarse bathymetric sonar data are available, thus substantially contributing to our ability to perform maritime archaeological research.

Original languageEnglish
Article number1218
JournalRemote Sensing
Volume16
Issue number7
DOIs
StatePublished - Apr 2024

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2024 by the authors.

Keywords

  • maritime archaeology
  • rock identification
  • satellite-derived bathymetry
  • VENμS

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Earth and Planetary Sciences

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