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Research Abstracts Online
January 2008 - March 2009

University of Minnesota Twin Cities
Institute of Technology
Department of Civil Engineering

PI: Patrick L. Brezonik

Development of Remote Sensing Tools to Improve Understanding and Management of Lake Malawi

The purpose of this study was to develop remote sensing tools with a view to improving the understanding and management of Lake Malawi. In essence the study involved the development of an algorithm for use in estimating chlorophyll-a concentration in Lake Malawi from satellite data, and Levels 2 and 3 of normalized satellite data with Seawifs Data Analysis System software. The research results have potential application in: monitoring the trophic state of the lake; assessing the accuracy of existing split-window algorithms for estimating lake surface temperature with satellite data for use in determining the circulation pattern of the lake and locating upwelling zones considered ideal for the development of the fishery industry; and developing a relationship between lake level rise and the rate at which forest land is being converted to cropland in the Lake Malawi Basin, a relationship that is critical in the implementation of best management practices in the watershed in order to avert flood disasters. The researchers used resources at the BMSDL and SDVL to calculate concentration of chlorophyll in the lake and to compute lake surface temperature.

Group Member

Geoffrey Chaluva, Graduate Student