Public Lab Research note

Washington University visits the Gulf Coast and Maps!

by stevie |

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stevie was awarded the Photo Documentation Barnstar by eustatic for their work in this research note.

This week, 11 senior architecture students and their professor from Washington University in St. Louis visited the Gulf Coast. We had a busy week planned and on Tuesday we met to take it on!

Scott Eustis gave a fabulous presentation on Louisiana wetlands and land loss, what's happening, why it's an important issue and what we're hoping to do about it. We had planned to explore the issue up close by mapping out in Bayou Plaquemines, but we had some work to do first! So learning about aerial mapping, the students each worked to build their first mapping rigs.



All of the rigs came out a little different and we explored the alternate construction options.

While most of the students chose to use faucet covers, one group stuck with the traditional bottle housing model, modifying it slightly with floating rings as we were planning to map over water- good call.

On Wednesday we met at Propeller in the morning to head to Venice. Our boat captains Tod and Ryan met us at Cajun Fishing Adventures to take us out on the water.


We were split onto two boats, one aiming to run a higher altitude flight and one to run a low altitude (1000ft) flight and an infrared flight. The students learned how to set up the balloon and attach their rig and we took off!



I was on the boat doing the low altitude flight, which went well. One of the take aways we had was that we needed more helium in the balloon to account for the weight of the string, so before we did the Near Infrared flight we added helium to our balloon.


On Thursday, we met at the Rosa Keller Library to build our maps. One of the issues we ran into right away was trying to figure out how to do file sharing among all the students. We got everyone on the same google drop box, and distributed out the SD cards, but it took a little time. Once we got going though, the students were able to do some really awesome stitching projects.



low-alt-infrared.jpg Although, we learned that to do NDVI, we would need the same photos taken without the filter, drat.


And this one, a group stitched of a Barataria mapping trip:

It was awesome :)



Stevie, do you have any pictures from the 3rd day?


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I award Stevie the photo documentation barnstar

Thanks Scott. Added those photos from the Library.



Ben and Lex also made a map of Barataria BN5, but the map didn't save in mapknitter. boo.

Awesome field trip. Scott, I think if you change the license on the YT Infragram video to CC, I can download it and try to make it into an NDVI video.

I think i did that, Chris. Im just not very good at infragramming yet, i'm so used to false color red that the infragram all reads as "dead" to me, when it's blooming green and yellow green like mad out there

@eustatic awards a barnstar to stevie for their awesome contribution!

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