MSc Defense by Nora Nieskens

MSc Defense by Nora Nieskens

August 21, 2023

MsC Defense by Nora Nieskens

On Friday, September 08, 2023 at 11 a.m. Nora Nieskens will present her Msc Thesis

“Estuaries in transition: Earth observation-based analysis of the turbidity dynamics in selected North Sea estuaries” in room 00.B.09 in John-Skilton-Str. 4a

From the abstract:

Estuaries are among the most sensitive, complex and biologically productive aquatic environments. Intensive human modification of estuarine depth and shape has resulted in altered hydromorphological conditions and consequently modified patterns of suspended particulate matter (SPM) for all German North Sea estuaries. The amount of SPM in estuaries, for which turbidity is used as a proxy, is of high economic and ecological importance as increased sediment loads contribute to aquatic environment degradation. This study investigated the long-term development and spatial patterns of surface turbidity in the Elbe estuary using in-situ data and remote sensing (RS) techniques. For long-term spatial turbidity retrieval, established RS approaches were tested employing Landsat data. Three semi-analytical algorithms (Nechad et al. 2009, Nechad et al. 2016 and Dogliotti et al. 2015) were applied, validated and calibrated against in-situ turbidity data. In addition, a random forest-based (RF) machine-learning approach was implemented and assessed. Accuracies varied considerably between different satellites and methodologies. The semi-empirical models, the RF model and the index-based approach (NDTI) show the potential to adequately capture the spatial and temporal distribution of turbidity. However, the semi-empirical approaches do not consistently capture the turbidity dynamics quantitatively for the Elbe estuary. The machine learning approach provides better predictive power compared to in-situ turbidity. The analysis of the long-term development and spatial patterns of surface turbidity in the Elbe estuary based on in-situ data and RS-based turbidity products showed that a new high turbidity level occurred in 2011 and intensified in the following years. Further challenges and potentials of transferring the RS-based approach to the other German North Sea estuaries are evaluated. It is found that additional complexities and uncertainties arise due to differences in in-situ data and estuarine conditions.

Hosting Institution: WORLD WIDE FUND FOR NATURE (WWF) GERMANY, Department for Nature Conservation Germany

1st Supervisor: Dr. Sarah Schönbrodt-Stitt

2nd Supervisor: Daniel Ruppert

you may also like:

Presentations at the EARSeL conference in Manchester

Presentations at the EARSeL conference in Manchester

Presentations at the EARSeL conference in Manchester   Dr. Marta Sapena and Dr. John Friesen represented the Earth Observation Center (EOC) of the German Aerospace Center (DLR) and our Earth Observation Research Cluster (EORC) this week at the EARSeL conference...

Our PhD candidate Ines Standfuss teaches at AniMove

Our PhD candidate Ines Standfuss teaches at AniMove

Our PhD candidate Ines Standfuss is teaching remote sensing for animal movement analysis this year at MPI at Lake Constanze. The AniMove science school has been founded more than ten years ago together with MPI and other organisations such as Smithsonian joined in the...

television and radio coverage about urban measurements

television and radio coverage about urban measurements

Our urban research got covered by TV and radio where we had the chance to explain the relevance of urban monitoring via remote sensing methods as well as in-situ devices (in cooperation with Prof. Marco Schmidt) especially for adaptation and mitigation potential of...

“Super Test Site Würzburg” – from the idea to realization

“Super Test Site Würzburg” – from the idea to realization

The "Super Test Site Würzburg" originated as an idea at the "Geolingual Studies Workshop", which our Geolingual Studies team (Prof. Biewer, Prof. Taubenböck) organized last year - we had reported on it: https://remote-sensing.org/geolingual-studies-workshop-day-1-2/ ;...

Two new Msc graduates Caroline and Helena

Two new Msc graduates Caroline and Helena

We are very happy to congratulate Caroline Goehner and Helena Wehner for successfully defending their thesis on alpine research and ibis environment analysis.  Great to see their journey through the eagle program, their technical advances, gaining hands-on...

Science and teaching at UFS

Science and teaching at UFS

The research and teaching activities of our University at the research station Schneefernerhaus on Zugspitze are increasing steadily and becoming more diverse. Ongoing and planned courses and science projects range from topics in informatics, astronomy to medicine and...