Chesapeake Bay Remote Sensing Program DataEntry ID: UMCES_CBRSP
Abstract: The Chesapeake Bay Remote Sensing Program (CBRSP) has used measurements of
ocean color from light aircraft to estimate chlorophyll concentrations in
Chesapeake Bay for the past thirteen years. Chlorophyll is a photosynthetic
pigment common to microscopic algae - phytoplankton - the main primary
producers that comprise the base of the food web in the Bay. This important
pigment imparts color to ... the water. Clear blue water has low chlorophyll and
reflects strongly at low wavelengths in the visible spectrum, whereas green
water has higher chlorophyll and absorbs strongly in the blue, reflecting light
at longer wavelengths. Data are collected using airborne radiometric
instruments that allow us to measure the reflected light and ascertain
concentrations of chlorophyll. This key property is one of the main ingredients
we need to estimate primary productivity and to gauge the overall productivity
of the ecosystem at higher trophic levels.
The 1989-1995 data were generated using the Ocean Data Acquisition System
(ODAS), a relatively simple ocean color instrument that was developed in the
mid-1980s at NASA Goddard Space Flight Center. ODAS consisted of three
radiometers in the blue-green region of the visible spectrum that measured
water-leaving radiance at 460, 490 and 520 nm. 1995-96 data were generated by
the SeaWiFS Aircraft Simulator (SAS II) that replaced the ODAS instrument. SAS
II contained sensors at seven wavebands, including the six visible bands of the
SeaWiFS satellite ocean color instrument. The additional bands of SAS II
allowed improved recoveries of chlorophyll in highly turbid conditions and at
the extremely high concentrations that accompany red tides. A new version of
the SeaWiFS Aircraft Simulator (SAS III) went into service in 1997 and we
continue to use this instrument in Bay and tributary flights at this writing.
SAS III is a 13-band instrument with improved spectral resolution. All the
instruments (ODAS, SAS II, SAS III) are paired with an infrared temperature
sensor that we use to measure sea surface temperature during flights. One of
our principal sponsors, the NOAA Chesapeake Bay Office, has been the main
distributor of imagery derived from the flights in a continuing collaboration.
In addition to the weekly surveys of main stem of the Bay, CBRSP has conducted
monthly tributary surveys of the Choptank and Patuxent Rivers since 1999. The
Choptank and Patuxent River flights began as a part of the Coastal Intensive
Site Network (CISNet), a goal of which was to measure chlorophyll in two
systems with strongly contrasting watersheds, agriculture in the case of the
Choptank, suburban in the case of the Patuxent.
Data Set Citation
Dataset Originator/Creator: University of Maryland
Dataset Title: Chesapeake Bay Remote Sensing Program Data
Dataset Release Place: Cambridge, Maryland
Dataset Publisher: University of Maryland, Environmental Science Center
Start Date: 1989-01-01
Access Constraints Contact Chesapeake Bay Remote Sensing Program.
Use Constraints None
Data Set Progress
Role: TECHNICAL CONTACT
Phone: 410-228-8200 X425
Horn Point Environmental Lab Univ. of Maryland PO Box 775
Province or State: MD
Postal Code: 21613
Role: DIF AUTHOR
Phone: (301) 614-6898
Email: Tyler.B.Stevens at nasa.gov
NASA Goddard Space Flight Center Global Change Master Directory
Province or State: MD
Postal Code: 20771
Harding, L.W. and E.C. Itsweire. 1991. Synoptic measurements of the
distribution of chlorophyll in the Chesapeake Bay using aircraft remote
sensing. In: Mihursky, J. A., Chaney, A. (eds.), New Perspectives in the
Chesapeake System: A Research and Management Partnership. Proc. 2nd Chesapeake Bay Research Conference, Baltimore, Maryland, 4-6 Dec. 1990. Chesapeake Research Consortium Publication No. 137, June, 1991, pp. 147-160.
Itsweire, E.C., L.W. Harding, Jr. and L.H. Bahner. 1991. Comparison of
phytoplankton biomass estimates for the Chesapeake Bay using aircraft
remote sensing and in-situ chlorophyll data. In: Mihursky, J. A.,
Chaney, A. (eds.), New Perspectives in the Chesapeake System: A
Research and Management Partnership. Proc. 2nd Chesapeake Bay Research
Conference, Baltimore, Maryland, 4-6 Dec. 1990. Chesapeake Research
Consortium Publication No. 137, June, 1991, pp. 161-168.
Harding, L.W., Jr., E.C. Itsweire and W.E. Esaias. 1992. Determination of
phytoplankton chlorophyll concentrations in the Chesapeake Bay with aircraft remote sensing. Rem. Sens. Environ. 40: 79-100.
Harding, L.W., Jr., E.C. Itsweire and W.E. Esaias. 1992. Algorithm development for recovering chlorophyll concentrations in the Chesapeake Bay using aircraft remote rensing, 1989-91. Proc. 1st Thematic Conf. Remote Sensing for Marine and Coastal Environments, pp. 1133-1150.
Harding, L.W., Jr. 1994. Long-term trends in the distribution of phytoplankton in Chesapeake Bay: roles of light, nutrients and streamflow. Mar. Ecol. Prog. Ser. 104: 267-291.
Harding, L.W., Jr., E C. Itsweire and W.E. Esaias. 1994. Estimates of
phytoplankton biomass in the Chesapeake Bay from aircraft remote sensing of
chlorophyll concentrations, 1989-92. Rem. Sens. Environ. 49: 41-56.
Harding, L.W., Jr., E.C. Itsweire and W.E. Esaias. 1995. Algorithm development for recovering chlorophyll concentrations in the Chesapeake Bay using aircraft remote sensing, 1989-91. Photogramm. Eng. Rem. Sens. Sens. 61: 177-185.
Malone, T.C., D.J. Conley, T.R. Fisher, P.M. Glibert and L.W. Harding, Jr.
1996. Scales of nutrient limited phytoplankton productivity in Chesapeake Bay. Estuaries 19: 371-385.
Harding, L.W., Jr. and E. Perry. 1997. Long-term increase of phytoplankton
biomass in Chesapeake Bay. Mar. Ecol. Prog. Ser. 157: 39-52.
Weiss, G.M., L.W. Harding, Jr., E.C. Itsweire and J.C. Campbell. 1997.
Assessing lateral variations of surface chlorophyll concentrations in the
Chesapeake Bay using aircraft remote sensing. Mar. Ecol. Prog. Ser. 149:
Hood, R.R., H.V. Wang, J.E. Purcell, E.D. Houde and L.W. Harding, Jr. 1999.
Modeling particles and pelagic organisms in Chesapeake Bay: convergent features control plankton distributions. J. Geophys. Res. 104: 1223-1243.
Scardi, M. and L.W. Harding, Jr. 1999. Developing an empirical model of
phytoplankton primary production: a neural network case study. Ecol. Modell. 120: 220-233.
Harding, L.W., W.D. Miller, R.N. Swift, and C.W. Wright. 2001. Aircraft remote sensing, In: Steele, J., S. Thorpe, and K. Turekian, (eds.), Encyclopedia of Ocean Sciences, Academic Press, London, UK.
Harding, L.W., Jr., M.E. Mallonee and E.S. Perry. 2001. Toward a predictive
understanding of primary productivity in a temperate, partially stratified
estuary. Estuar. Coastal Shelf Sci. (in press).
Extended Metadata Properties
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Creation and Review Dates
DIF Creation Date: 2003-09-30
Last DIF Revision Date: 2012-12-12
Future DIF Review Date: 2004-09-30