Applications R+D:

  • Shoreline monitoring
  • Intertidal topography, surface and volume variation
  • Beach users density
  • Wave break zone, bar and rip currents detection
  • Identification and monitoring of the erosion zones
  • Beach regeneration monitoring
  • Environmental impact of coastal structures
  • Storms impact in the coast
  • Swell monitoring
  • Storm Water plume monitoring

Image interpretation: coastline detection

Once the picture is selected, the area of interest is chosen. Pixels from the area of study are separated into two groups using a contour detection algorithm (Morichon et al. 2007), based on a segmentation technique:

  • A group of pixels representing a “dry” part (sandy beach).
  • A group of pixels representing a “wet “part (ocean).

A new binary matrix of the zone of interest is created with the two groups of pixels. A contour detection algorithm, SOBEL, is applied to the new matrix in order to obtain the position of the coastline.

Image interpretation: Intertidal Topography

The hourly detection of the coastline position during a tidal semi-cycle enables the measurement of the intertidal beach topography.


Intertidal topography obtained with this technique gives good quantitative results and represents well the complex morphology of the beaches.