APPLICATION OF MULTISPECTRAL SATELLITE DATA FOR GEOLOGICAL MAPPING IN ANTARCTIC ENVIRONMENTS
Keywords: Multispectral satellite data, Geological mapping, Antarctic environments
Abstract. Remote sensing imagery is capable to provide a solution to overcome the difficulties associated with geological field mapping in the Antarctic. Advanced optical and radar satellite imagery is the most applicable tool for mapping and identification of inaccessible regions in Antarctic. Consequently, an improved scientific research using remote sensing technology would be essential to provide new and more complete lithological and structural data to fill the numerous knowledge gaps on Antarctica’s geology. In this investigation, Oscar coast area in Graham Land, Antarctic Peninsula (AP) was selected to conduct a remote sensing study using Landsat-7 Thematic Mapper (TM), Landsat-8 and the Advanced Spaceborne Thermal Emission and Reflection Radiometer (ASTER) data. Contrast-enhanced Red-Green-Blue (RGB) composites, band ratios and Relative Band Depth (RBD) image processing techniques were applied to Landsat-8 and ASTER dataset for establishing the spectral separation of the main lithologic groups exposed in the study area. The outcomes of this investigation demonstrated the applications of SWIR and TIR bands of the multispectral remote sensing datasets to identify lithological units and producing geological maps with suitable accuracy of ice-free rock regions in the Antarctic Peninsula. The results could be extended to map coverage of non-investigated regions further east and validated previously inferred geological observations concerning other rocks and mineral deposits throughout the Antarctica.