Monitoring Coastal Erosion and Rehabilitation

At Scientific Aerospace we are using our precision surveying drones for high resolution environmental monitoring of coastal erosion and rehabilitation. One site currently being monitored is the sandy river foreshore at John Tonkin Park in East Fremantle.

John Tonkin Park, East Fremantle

The Town of East Fremantle recently completed works to stabilise the sandy foreshore and enhance the beach area through the placement of strategic rock groins and the widening of the existing beach. The soft engineering solution was chosen to provide stability to the foreshore and to increase the recreational and amenity values of the site.

Past protection methods have included the installation of reno mattresses to prevent the undercutting of existing vegetation. However, the site has been subject to ongoing erosion due to it being exposed to reasonably strong currents and a significant amount of boat traffic. The wider beach sections provided by the offshore headlands offer a buffer to erosion for the existing vegetation and provide the Town with time to respond to any future erosion without the loss of infrastructure.

High precision monitoring

Our survey grade drones use Post Processed Kinematic (PPK) positioning technology to provide positional accuracy up to 1.5 times the horizontal and 2.0 times vertical ground sampling distance (GSD). Unlike Real Time Kinematic (RTK), PPK processes the positioning information after the flight, not during. Data is logged on the aircraft and combined with data from the base station after the flight. As a result, there is no risk of data loss due to radio link outages.

The survey will be conducted fortnightly from the 1st of February until the 26th of April 2018. Outcomes from the project will include identifying any movement or subsidence of the rock groins, erosion rates of the sandy beach sections and any changes in the distribution of shallow water seagrass beds.

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