HOW CHALLENGING IS THE DISCRIMINATION OF FLOATING MATERIALS ON THE SEA SURFACE USING HIGH RESOLUTION MULTISPECTRAL SATELLITE DATA?
- 1Remote Sensing Laboratory, National Technical University of Athens, Athens, Zografou, Greece
- 2Institute of Oceanography, Hellenic Centre for Marine Research, Athens, Anavyssos, Greece
Keywords: marine, debris, litter, MARIDA, Sentinel-2, GLCM, FDI, NDVI
Abstract. Developing a remote sensing-based monitoring system for detecting marine plastics requires a thorough investigation of their discrimination possibilities from other floating objects. To this end, this study aims to explore the ability to discriminate marine debris from other floating materials and sea features using high-resolution multispectral satellite data. To perform our analysis, we utilized the open-access Marine Debris Archive (MARIDA), which contains several marine classes on Sentinel-2 (S2) data and benchmarks machine learning frameworks. In particular, we investigated well-established spectral indices, GrayLevel Co-occurrence Matrix (GLCM), Local Binary Pattern (LBP) texture and other spatial features at multiple scales. A Random Forest (RF) classifier was also applied for the classification procedure, and the spectral and spatial features which contributed the most were underlined. The quantitative and qualitative assessment indicated that the spectral information alone is insufficient to distinguish marine plastic from other floating materials which exhibit similar spectral behavior, such as vessels. However, a strong potential even for challenging discrimination tasks is presented when combined with spatial information. By further evaluating our results qualitatively, significant insights are gained, and specific combinations are proposed for challenging floating materials discrimination.