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Katrina Rolls Barrier Island Landward — Shown by Airborne Laser Mapping Images
Released: 9/20/2005 8:42:29 AM

Contact Information:
U.S. Department of the Interior, U.S. Geological Survey
Office of Communication
119 National Center
Reston, VA 20192
Abby Sallenger 1-click interview
Phone: 727-803-8747 ext. 3015

Ann Tihansky 1-click interview
Phone: 727-803-8747 ext. 3075

Carolyn Bell 1-click interview
Phone: 703-648-4463

In a cooperative research program, the USGS, NASA and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) are using airborne laser mapping systems to quantify coastal change along the entire coastline affected by Hurricane Katrina (http://coastal.er.usgs.gov/hurricanes/katrina/). Elevation data from before and after the hurricane are compared to determine the patterns and magnitudes of coastal change including erosion and destruction of buildings and infrastructure. Three lidar surveys were collected using two different systems, the NASA’s Experimental Airborne Research Lidar (EAARL) and USACE’s Compact Hydrographic Airborne Rapid Total Survey (CHARTS).

The devastating impact of Hurricane Katrina was observed on Dauphin Island, a barrier island approximately 150 km (90 miles) from where the storm made landfall. Storm surge inundated the island and waves transported sand landward into fan-shaped deposits shifting the entire island landward. Numerous houses, shown in the lidar difference plots as red rectangles, were completely destroyed. NASA has created a series of dissolve animations that illustrate how major storm events can impact and change coastal areas and can be viewed on NASA TV or on the web at: http://www.nasa.gov/vision/earth/lookingatearth/katrina_poststorm.html. For more information about these images and their significance to coastal change see: http://coastal.er.usgs.gov/hurricanes/katrina/lidar/dauphin-island.html

NASA Television is now carried on an MPEG-2 digital signal accessed via satellite AMC-6, at 72 degrees west longitude, transponder 17C, 4040 MHz, vertical polarization. A Digital Video Broadcast (DVB) - compliant Integrated Receiver Decoder (IRD) with modulation of QPSK/DBV, data rate of 36.86 and FEC 3/4 will be needed for reception.

Note to editors: Contacts are:

USGS Coastal erosion sci., Dr. Abby Sallenger, asallenger@usgs.gov, or 727-803-8747 ext. 3015
USGS Science Communications. Ann Tihansky, tihansky@usgs.gov, or 727-803-8747 ext. 3075
USGS Public Affairs, Carolyn Bell, cbell@usgs.gov, or 703-648-4463
NASA-Public Affairs, Keith Koehler, keith.a.koehler@nasa.gov, or 757-824-1579
NASA-Lidar technology, C.Wayne Wright, charles.w.wright@nasa.gov, or 757-824-1698

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