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Predicted seafloor facies of Central Santa Monica Bay, California

Open-File Report 2004-1081

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Abstract

Summary -- Mapping surficial seafloor facies (sand, silt, muddy sand, rock, etc.) should be the first step in marine geological studies and is crucial when modeling sediment processes, pollution transport, deciphering tectonics, and defining benthic habitats. This report outlines an empirical technique that predicts the distribution of seafloor facies for a large area offshore Los Angeles, CA using high-resolution bathymetry and co-registered, calibrated backscatter from multibeam echosounders (MBES) correlated to ground-truth sediment samples. The technique uses a series of procedures that involve supervised classification and a hierarchical decision tree classification that are now available in advanced image-analysis software packages. Derivative variance images of both bathymetry and acoustic backscatter are calculated from the MBES data and then used in a hierarchical decision-tree framework to classify the MBES data into areas of rock, gravelly muddy sand, muddy sand, and mud. A quantitative accuracy assessment on the classification results is performed using ground-truth sediment samples. The predicted facies map is also ground-truthed using seafloor photographs and high-resolution sub-bottom seismic-reflection profiles. This Open-File Report contains the predicted seafloor facies map as a georeferenced TIFF image along with the multibeam bathymetry and acoustic backscatter data used in the study as well as an explanation of the empirical classification process.

Additional Publication Details

Publication type:
Report
Publication Subtype:
USGS Numbered Series
Title:
Predicted seafloor facies of Central Santa Monica Bay, California
Series title:
Open-File Report
Series number:
2004-1081
Edition:
-
Year Published:
2004
Language:
ENGLISH
Description:
dataset