Above: Hobie Boeschenstein from SeaTrac piloting the SP-48.


The Center for Ocean Mapping and Innovative Technologies (COMIT), an element of the University of South Florida’s College of Marine Science in St. Petersburg, recently completed a four-week field sampling campaign called the Tampa Bay Bathymetry Experiment or TBBEx for short. TBBEx used four different survey methods (platforms) to collect data on seafloor bathymetry (water depths) as well as coastal land elevations in the western portion of Tampa Bay. Because no single mapping technology can cover all the depths efficiently, COMIT scientists tested a combination of sensors and platforms to determine best and most efficient ways to survey these areas, which, because of sea level rise, are extremely prone to inundation and are thus top priorities for state, federal, and even international decision-makers.


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