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The Use of Historical Imagery in the Remediation of an Urban Hazardous Waste Site

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1 Author(s)
E. Terrence Slonecker ; U.S. Geological Survey/Eastern Geographic Science Center, Spectroscopic and Hyperspectral Remote Sensing Research, Reston, Virginia, USA

The information derived from the interpretation of historical aerial photographs is perhaps the most basic multitemporal application of remote-sensing data. Aerial photographs dating back to the early 20th century can be extremely valuable sources of historical landscape activity. In this application, imagery from 1918 to 1927 provided a wealth of information about chemical weapons testing, storage, handling, and disposal of these hazardous materials. When analyzed by a trained photo-analyst, the 1918 aerial photographs resulted in 42 features of potential interest. When compared with current remedial activities and known areas of contamination, 33 of 42 or 78.5% of the features were spatially correlated with areas of known contamination or other remedial hazardous waste cleanup activity.

Published in:

IEEE Journal of Selected Topics in Applied Earth Observations and Remote Sensing  (Volume:4 ,  Issue: 2 )