Articles written in Journal of Earth System Science
Volume 124 Issue 7 October 2015 pp 1475-1486
This paper aims at revealing the spectral characteristics of the olivine basalts exposed at Wadi Natash area, Egypt, using FieldSpec spectroradiometer. It also evaluates band ratios and fusion techniques for mapping purposes using ASTER data. Several volcanic episodes occurred during Early- to Late-Cretaceous are recorded in the study area. Early-Cretaceous olivine basalts are highly carbonated. Late-Cretaceous eruptions took place throughout several volcanic cones aligned in NW direction. Based on FieldSpec measurements and petrographic data, two groups of olivine basalt namely `A' and `B' are recognized. Fresh olivine basalt (group A) is characterized by low flat spectral profile with overall low reflectance values (~20%). Spectral profile of altered olivine basalt (group B) shows moderate reflectance values (~37%) with four little absorption features around the 1.10, 1.40, 2.00 and 2.35 μm wavelength regions. These absorption features are attributed mainly to the presence of chlorite and carbonate alteration products as indicated by petrographic examination. ASTER false colour composite band ratio image (3/2:R, 8/1:G and 8/5:B) discriminates easily the fresh and altered basalts by deep blue and red-dish blue colours respectively. Image fusion between previously mentioned FCC ratios image and high spatial resolution ASTER panchromatic image are carried out using brovey and HSV transformation methods. Visual and statistical assessment methods proved that HSV fusion image yields better image interpretability results compared to brovey image. It improves the spatial resolution of original FCC ratios image with acceptable spectral preservation. The present study proved the usefulness of Field-Spec spectral profiles and the processed ASTER data for discriminating different olivine basalt groups exposed at the study area.