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Integrated thermal infrared imaging and Structure-from-Motion photogrametry to map apparent temperature and radiant hydrothermal heat flux at Mammoth Mountain, CA USA

September 15, 2015

This work presents a method to create high-resolution (cm-scale) orthorectified and georeferenced maps of apparent surface temperature and radiant hydrothermal heat flux and estimate the radiant hydrothermal heat emission rate from a study area. A ground-based thermal infrared (TIR) camera was used to collect (1) a set of overlapping and offset visible imagery around the study area during the daytime and (2) time series of co-located visible and TIR imagery at one or more sites within the study area from pre-dawn to daytime. Daytime visible imagery was processed using the Structure-from-Motion photogrammetric method to create a digital elevation model onto which pre-dawn TIR imagery was orthorectified and georeferenced. Three-dimensional maps of apparent surface temperature and radiant hydrothermal heat flux were then visualized and analyzed from various computer platforms (e.g., Google Earth, ArcGIS). We demonstrate this method at the Mammoth Mountain fumarole area on Mammoth Mountain, CA. Time-averaged apparent surface temperatures and radiant hydrothermal heat fluxes were observed up to 73.7 oC and 450 W m-2, respectively, while the estimated radiant hydrothermal heat emission rate from the area was 1.54 kW. Results should provide a basis for monitoring potential volcanic unrest and mitigating hydrothermal heat-related hazards on the volcano.