The project "Acquiring Digital Elevation Models (DTM) in Coastal Areas by means of Innovative Solutions and Processing Techniques - Hydrography 2.0" aims to provide faster and most cost effective solutions to monitoring nearshore bathymetry of extensive areas on continuous bases. This data is of major interest for the Flemish Maritime Access. This service manages the waterways of the Flemish ports of Ostend, Zeebrugge, Ghent and Antwerp, as well as the infrastructure and properties located along these navigation routes. For the next 4 years, Antea Group will play a key technical role in this project, bringing in expertise on innovation and project management.
This project will try to tackle the two major challenges that bathymetric surveys face:
- High resolution mapping of extensive areas with active sediment transport require multiple survey platforms working simultaneously. This kind of acquisitions is expensive and therefore it can’t be undertaken with the optimum frequency that detailed monitoring requires.
- Mapping the foreshore (or beach face) area, being part of the break water zone, is challenging. The most common approaches are:
- For areas with a relevant tidal range, data from marine surveys performed in high water is combined with topographic (red) laser altimetry measurements (LiDAR) performed during low water. Both datasets must be acquired close in time if the area is affected by active sediment transport.
- Bathymetric LiDAR, combining the results from a green (penetrating the water column under favourable conditions) and a red laser (return at first contact) acquired simultaneously (only green in the newest equipment). However this is a very sensitive technique not feasible for continuous monitoring.