PROGRESS IN GEOGRAPHY ›› 2019, Vol. 38 ›› Issue (8): 1182-1195.doi: 10.18306/dlkxjz.2019.08.007

• Special Column: Watershed Geography • Previous Articles     Next Articles

Progress in remote sensing of aquatic environments at the watershed scale

DUAN Hongtao,LUO Juhua,CAO Zhigang,XUE Kun,XIAO Qitao,LIU Dong   

  1. Key Laboratory of Watershed Geographic Sciences, Nanjing Institute of Geography and Limnology, CAS, Nanjing 210008, China
  • Received:2018-05-28 Revised:2019-02-27 Online:2019-08-25 Published:2019-08-25
  • Supported by:
    National Natural Science Foundation of China(41671358);the Provincial Natural Science Foundation of Jiangsu of China(BK20160049);Youth Innovation Promotion Association of CAS(2012238)


Since ancient times, humans have lived near water, depending on water for survival and progress. There is a close link between the environmental quality of a lake or river basin and human activity, with the role of their ecological services being of vital importance to local communities. As an advanced technology, satellite remote sensing can monitor the spatial dynamics of the current situation, as well as look back to determine the temporal dynamics of aquatic environments. This allows, when combined with modeling, the possibility to project the future situation in order to improve planning and environmental management. Remote sensing can play an irreplaceable role for humans to understand, monitor, and manage basin environments for the present and future generations. This article focuses on the remote sensing of lake and river basins, exploring different research objectives, addressing the basic theoretical framework, analyzing the state-of-the-art in Chinese and international research programs, and pointing to priorities for future development.

Key words: water color remote sensing, water quality remote sensing, aquatic remote sensing, watershed geographic sciences, inland water, satellite remote sensing, review