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How is the Landsat 8 Coastal/Aerosol Band 1 used?

Landsat 8’s Band 1 (0.433-0.453 µm) is useful for imaging shallow water and tracking fine atmospheric particles like dust and smoke.

Since water absorbs and scatters light, oceans and lakes tend to look dark or lack detail on satellite images, especially in the sediment-laden waters near coastlines. Band 1 reflects blues and violets and displays subtle differences in the color of water; these changes in color intensity can indicate what is mixed in the water.

Scientists have used the coastal band to monitor chlorophyll concentrations and suspended sediments in the water, as well as phytoplankton and algae blooms.

This band is also useful in tracking and estimating the concentration of fine aerosol particles such as smoke and haze in the atmosphere.

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Lake Erie algal bloom
Landsat satellites captured this image of Lake Erie during a harmful algal bloom event.

 

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