Digital Surface Model of Ninemile Study Site

In early July, DroneFire flew a stream and riparian restoration site with a drone. We created an automated path over both degraded and restored stream reaches to capture high-definition true-color imagery. Later, those images were processed in our research lab to derive products such as the Digital Surface Model (DSM) pictured above. Essentially, a DSM is a representation of the earth's surface and the objects on it. The DSM was generated with a Delauney based triangulation algorithm, and is colored by elevation. As can be seen in the image, warmer colors are found at higher elevations (A) and cooler colors at lower elevations (B).  The degraded river reach can be identified as the green, constrained corridor near B that runs the extent of the image. Riparian vegetation can be clearly identified as the three-dimensional "lumps" on the otherwise smooth surface near the river. The elevation also shows the rapid elevation increase at the fringes of the riparian area (B). Error is observed in the image edge due to lack of points necessary for triangulation. These error relics can be seen near A on the image above. Overall, DSMs are extremely valuable for analysis in many academic fields such as forestry, hydrology, ecology, and geography.