Water Quality Gradients in an Upside-down River System

August 22, 2012 | By | Add a Comment

A CREW proposal submitted to NASA-ROSES-2012 A32: WATER: Remote Sensing of Water Quality (NNH12ZDA001N-WATER), $553,369, 1-3 mo/yr, 1/01/2013 – 12/31/2015.

I propose to explore the seasonal and spatial dynamics of water quality and temperature in the Klamath River system – specifically it’s lakes and reservoirs. My hypothesis is that reservoirs and lakes have both positive and negative effects on water quality depending on season and lake characteristics. This study will use hyperspectral imaging to quantify suspended sediment, algae and temperature dynamics and identify seasonal and spatial patterns, so as to gain an understanding into the driving physical processes. Select in-situ water quality “ground truth”, overlaid with handheld and aircraft-based hyperspectral imaging, and EO-1 and MODIS satellite overpasses will be used to track the time-space dynamics of Klamath system water quality over the last decade. Retrieval algorithms will be developed from these data, to arrive at robust multi-frequency relationships related to physical water quality parameters. Appropriate cloud clearing and atmospheric corrections will also be explored to maximize the water quality signal. This project directly addresses the NASA ROSES 2012 A.32 “Remote Sensing of Water Quality” solicitation goal 2.3 “Improving description of the link between optical and biogeochemical properties”, and is generally responsive to NASA’s goal of advancing the use of remote sensing to assess the quality of water of inland aquatic environments (e.g., rivers and lakes) and coastal regions.

Filed in: Pending Support

Dr. Paul R. Houser

About the Author (Author Profile)

Dr. Houser in an internationally recognized expert in local to global land surface-atmospheric remote sensing, in-situ observation and numerical simulation, development and application of hydrologic data assimilation methods, scientific integrity and policy, and global water and energy cycling. He received his B.S. and Ph.D. degrees in Hydrology and Water Resources from the University of Arizona in 1992 and 1996 respectively. Dr. Houser's previous experience includes internships at the U.S. Geological Survey and at Los Alamos National Laboratory. Dr. Houser joined the NASA-GSFC Hydrological Sciences Branch and the Data Assimilation Office (DAO/GMAO) in 1997, served as manager of NASA’s Land Surface Hydrology Program, and served as branch head of the Hydrological Science Branch. In 2005, he joined the George Mason University Climate Dynamics Program and the Geography and Geoinformation Sciences Department as Professor of Global Hydrology, and formed CREW (the Center for Research for Environment and Water). Dr. Houser has also teamed with groundwater development and exploration companies (EarthWater Global and Geovesi) and has served as Science Advisor to the U.S. Bureau of Reclamation. Dr. Houser has led numerous scientific contributions, including the development of Land Data Assimilation Systems (LDAS), the Hydrospheric States Mission (Hydros/SMAP), the Land Information System (LIS), the NASA Energy and Water cycle Study (NEWS), and the Water Cycle Solutions Network (WaterNet).

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