Airborne multispectral remote sensing imaging for detecting irrigation canal leaks in the Lower Rio Grande Valley Conference Paper uri icon


  • Techniques and methods are available to detect water leaks, but traditional field survey methods for detection of water leaks in irrigation systems are costly and time consuming. Airborne thermal remote sensing has been proposed, studied, used, and shown great promise as a quick and cost-effective remote sensing method of determining the location of leaks in irrigation canals. This research presents a new research of airborne multispectral remote sensing for leak detection and potential seepage identification in irrigation canal networks conducted in the Lower Rio Grande Valley, Texas. A multispectral imager which combines Red, NIR, and Thermal sensors has been used to collect image data over the 24 selected canal segments over 8 irrigation districts. The image triples have been processed with regular and batch operations using ERDAS Imagine. The result of field reconnaissance verified image analysis well overall. This research has established an airborne multispectral remote sensing method to rapidly provide high-resolution imaging data and detect leaks, and determine potential seepage of irrigation canals. This technology would have widespread application.

published proceedings

  • American Society for Photogrammetry and Remote Sensing - 20th Biennial Workshop on Aerial Photography, Videography, and High Resolution Digital Imagery for Resource Assessment 2005

author list (cited authors)

  • Huang, Y., Fipps, G., Maas, S., & Fletcher, R.

complete list of authors

  • Huang, Y||Fipps, G||Maas, S||Fletcher, R

publication date

  • December 2006