Using Aerial Platforms in Predicting Water Quality Parameters from Hyperspectral Imaging Data with Deep Neural Networks

  • Taina Hakala
  • Ilkka PölönenEmail author
  • Eija Honkavaara
  • Roope Näsi
  • Teemu Hakala
  • Antti Lindfors
Part of the Computational Methods in Applied Sciences book series (COMPUTMETHODS, volume 54)


In near future it is assumable that automated unmanned aerial platforms are coming more common. There are visions that transportation of different goods would be done with large planes, which can handle over 1000 kg payloads. While these planes are used for transportation they could similarly be used for remote sensing applications by adding sensors to the planes. Hyperspectral imagers are one this kind of sensor types. There is need for the efficient methods to interpret hyperspectral data to the wanted water quality parameters. In this work we survey the performance of neural networks in the prediction of water quality parameters from remotely sensed hyperspectral data in freshwater basins. The hyperspectral data consists of 36 bands in the wavelength range of 508–878 nm and the water quality parameters to be predicted are temperature, conductivity, turbidity, Secchi depth, blue-green algae, chlorophyll-a, total phosphorus, acidity and dissolved oxygen. The objective of this investigation was to study the behaviour of different types of neural networks with this kind of data. Study is a survey of the operation of neural networks on this problem, which can be used as a basis for the design of a more comprehensive study. The neural network types examined were multilayer perceptron and 1-, 2- and 3-dimensional convolutional neural networks with the effect of scaling the hyperspectral data with standard or min-max -scaler recorded. We also investigated investigated how the prediction of individual water quality parameter depends on whether the neural network model is done solely with respect to this one parameter or with several parameters predicted simultaneously with the same model. The results of the correspondence between the predicted and measured water quality parameters were presented with normalized root mean square error, Pearson correlation coefficient and coefficient of determination. The best models were obtained the 2-dimensional convolutional neural networks with standard scaling made separately for each parameter. The parameters showing good predictability were conductivity, turbidity, Secchi-depth, blue-green algae, chlorophyll-a and total phosphorus, for which the coefficient of determination was at least 0.96 (apart from Secchi-depth even 0.98).


Remote sensing Hyperspectral Water quality Convolutional neural networks 



This research has been co-funded by Finnish Funding Agency for Innovation Tekes (grants 2208/31/2013 and 1711/31/2016).


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© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2020

Authors and Affiliations

  • Taina Hakala
    • 1
  • Ilkka Pölönen
    • 1
    Email author
  • Eija Honkavaara
    • 2
  • Roope Näsi
    • 2
  • Teemu Hakala
    • 2
  • Antti Lindfors
    • 3
  1. 1.Faculty of Information TechnologyUniversity of JyväskyläJyväskyläFinland
  2. 2.Finnish Geospatial Research Institute FGIKirkkonummiFinland
  3. 3.Luode Consulting LtdEspooFinland

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