ASTER Geoscience Maps

Last modified by Laukamp, Carsten (Mineral Resources, Kensington WA) on May 26, 2015

The ASTER Geoscience Map of Australia

The ASTER Geoscience Map of Australia is a set of public, web-accessible digital geoscience products generated from satellite ASTER data.

The data release for the ASTER Geoscience Map of Australia occurred on 07.08.2012 at the 34th International Geological Congress in Brisbane, Australia.

ASTER (Advanced Spaceborne Thermal Emission and Reflection Radiometer) is a Japanese imaging instrument on board USA’s TERRA satellite. The multispectral imaging sensor is the world’s first and to date only “geoscience tuned” satellite Earth Observing System.

The Centre for 3D Mineral Mapping developed new methods and software that transformed the raw ASTER satellite data into a new suite of 17 mineral group maps.

The ASTER Geoscience Maps of Australia feature the first publically released continental scale mineral maps derived from thermal infrared bands and should help set the standard for global ASTER geoscience mapping.

 A suite of hyperspectral satellites will be launched from 2017 (www.isiswg.org) and CSIRO is working with International satellite teams to again capture their benefit for Australia.

Data can be downloaded from CSIRO's Data Access portal. Or the CSIRO FTP site: ftp://ftp.arrc.csiro.au/arrc/Australian_ASTER_Geoscience_Map/

The product notes can be downloaded here: Australian ASTER Geoscience Product Notes FINALx.pdf

 

Figure 1:  Satellite ASTER Geoscience map of iron oxide composition.

Product details

ASTER has 14 spectral bands spanning wavelengths sensitive to important rock forming minerals, including: Iron oxides, clays, carbonates, quartz, muscovite and chlorite.

Each ASTER image covers a 60 by 60 km area with individual pixel elements ranging from 15 to 90 m suitable for geoscience mapping from continent (1:2,500,000) down to mineral prospect (1:50,000) scale. The Australian mosaic is sourced from ~35,000 ASTER scenes with approximately 3500 used in the final mosaic.

The image pre-processing methodology to generate the 17 ASTER geoscience map products involves correcting for complicating instrument, atmosphere and vegetation effects. The resultant ASTER geoscience maps provide new mineral information not available from other current technologies. This new mineral information is valuable for more accurate mapping of the regolith cover that blankets much of Australia and finding those often small islands of bedrock materials.

The final geoscience products represent “mineral group” information only. The reason for this is that the determination of the abundance and chemistry of specific minerals requires even higher resolution systems often termed as hyperspectral, which measures hundreds of spectral bands, such as the Australian airborne HyMap™ system (www.hyvista.com). A suite of hyperspectral satellites will be launched from 2015 (www.isiswg.org) and CSIRO is working with International satellite teams to again capture their benefit for Australia.

Partners involved

CSIRO has been collaborating with Japanese space agencies and NASA for twenty years in order to capture the opportunity of continental-scale mapping of land surface mineralogy over Australia using ASTER. CSIRO has also enjoyed close partnerships with government geosurveys across Australia and in the last 2-3 years been successful in securing funding through schemes such as South Australian Governments PACE 2020 initiative and WA Centres of Excellence funding (for establishing C3DMM).

 

Accessing the maps

The ASTER Geoscience Maps are digitally available to the public as GIS-compatible images (e.g. TIF and JPG format) or in image-processing software format (e.g. BSQ with headers).

The TIF and JPG format data can be downloaded online from:

• CSIRO's Data Access Portal or the CSIRO FTP site: ftp://ftp.arrc.csiro.au/arrc/Australian_ASTER_Geoscience_Map/

AuScope or

• NTGS: Image web service

• South Australian Geological Survey SARIG

• Geoscience Australia World Wind Viewer

The Australian ASTER geoscience maps are digitally available to the public as GIS-compatible images (e.g. TIF format) or in image-processing software format (e.g. BSQ with headers). The State ASTER maps have been carved into 1:1,000,000 mapsheets with individual file sizes reduced to ~100 Mbytes each.

Order the complete Australian ASTER geoscience data set, including the BSQ data (~1.2 Terabytes), from Geoscience Australia Sales Centre (sales@ga.gov.au).

Future work

These Version 1 satellite ASTER geoscience maps of Australia can be improved by removing complicating vegetation and instrument noise effects. Work has also begun preparing for the next generation of higher-resolution, geoscience-tuned satellites, such as Worldview-3, PRISMA, HISUI and EnMap, amongst others.

State and Territory ASTER maps

Western Australia

The ASTER geoscience map of WA was publically released by Mines and Petroleum Minister Norman Moore at GSWA's Minerals House (Figure 2). The public release draw a lot of interest by state agencies as well as national and international exploration and mining industry. See here for GSWA's related message.

 

Figure 2. Top:  Ian Tyler, Tom Cudahy, Norman Moore, James Cleverley, Steve Harvey (from left to right). Bottom: Tom Cudahy and Norman Moore investigate one of the ASTER derived Geoscience products.

The WA portion of the ASTER Geoscientific Map mosaic is sourced from ~12,000 ASTER scenes with approximately 1500 used in the final mosaic (Figure 3).

 

Figure 3:  Satellite WA ASTER Geoscience map of iron oxide composition (blue: goethitic; red - hematitic).

The WA ASTER Geoscience Maps have been carved into 1:1,000,000 mapsheets with individual file sizes reduced to ~100 Mbytes each. The complete data set, including the BSQ data (~500 Gigabytes), is available from Geological Survey Western Australia product sales via an external drive (www.dmp.wa.gov.au/371.aspx).

The product notes for the WA maps can be downloaded here: WA ASTER Geoscience Product Notes 15112011.pdf

   

South Australia

The SA portion of the ASTER Geoscience Map mosaic (Figure 4) is sourced from 30000 ASTER scenes covering Australia with approximately 600 used in the final mosaic.

The earlier released ASTER Geoscience Maps of Western Australia (released 15.11.2011), South Australia (released 05.03.2012) and Northern Territory (released 21.05.2012) have been removed from C3DMM's ftp-server to make space available for the continental scale maps.

 

Figure 4:  Satellite SA ASTER Geoscience map of silica abundance index (blue: low silica content; red: high silica content). Grey-scale underlay of ASTER band 2 for geographic context.

The product notes for the SA maps can be downloaded here:SA ASTER Geoscience Product Notes 27022012.pdf

The State ASTER maps have been carved into 1:250,000 mapsheets with individual file sizes reduced to ~50 Mbytes each. The complete data set, including the BSQ data (~500 Gigabytes), is available from the Geological Survey of South Australia sales via an external drive.

Northern Territory

The Territory ASTER maps (Figure 5) \ have been carved into 1:1 000 000 mapsheets with individual file sizes reduced to ~200 to 900 Mbytes each. The complete data set, including the BSQ data (~500 Gigabytes), is available from the Northern Territory Geological Survey product sales via an external drive.+

The NT ASTER geoscience maps are digitally available to the public as GIS-compatible images (e.g. TIF and JPG format) or in image-processing software format (e.g. BSQ with headers).

 

Figure 5:  Satellite NT ASTER Geoscience maps. From left to right: 1) False Colour RGB, 2) AlOH Group composition (blue: Al-rich white mica and smectite or well ordered kaolinite; red: Al-poor white mica and smectite), 3) Silica abundance index (blue: low silica content; red: high silica content). Grey-scale underlay of ASTER band 2 for geographic context.

The product notes for the NT maps can be downloaded here:NT ASTER Geoscience Product Notes FINAL.pdf

 

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