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Hyperspectral airborne and satellite data from EnMAP for mineral mapping of raw material at Gamsberg-Aggeneys area, South Africa

Hyperspectral remote sensing already is important in geoscientific research in the fields of geology, soil, exploration and mining. New hyperspectral satellite systems are already in operation (e.g. EnMAP, PRISMA and DESIS) and more systems are planned e.g. the European Copernicus Next Generation Hyperspectral Satellite CHIME. Investigated are the information contents of hyperspectral data for exploration target recognition and their dependency on spatial resolutions of different sensor platforms. Airborne data offer high spatial resolution of 2.5 m with limited areal data acquisition, whereas hyperspectral spaceborne sensors guaranty nearly worldwide data availability with the same spectral characteristics but medium spatial resolution (30 m). The aspects of high spectral resolution and high versus medium spatial resolution targeted mineral mapping is demonstrated. Hyperspectral satellite data are analyzed successfully to map major mineralogy and proxy minerals such as hematite for the ore mineralization at Gamsberg. The results indicate, that hyperspectral satellite data are an important data source for exploration activities despite the moderate spatial resolution. However, for detailed mapping especially within a mineralization zone, hyperspectral high spatial resolution data from airborne or unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) systems are important, to understand and to map the mineralogy of such a zone in their complete complexity.


Martin C. Schodlok1, Michaela Frei1
1BGR, Germany
GeoBerlin 2023