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Indoor spectroradiometric characterization of plastic litters commonly polluting the Mediterranean Sea: toward the application of multispectral imagery

  • Autori: Corbari L.; Maltese A.; Capodici F.; Mangano M.C.; Sarà Gianluca; Ciraolo G.
  • Anno di pubblicazione: 2020
  • Tipologia: Articolo in rivista
  • OA Link:


Around 350 million tonnes of plastics are annually produced worldwide. A remarkable percentage of these products is dispersed in the environment, finally reaching and dispersed in the marine environment. Recent field surveys detected microplastics’ concentrations in the Mediterranean Sea. The most commonly polymers found were polyethylene, polypropylene and viscose, ethylene vinyl acetate and polystyrene. In general, the in-situ monitoring of microplastic pollution is difficult and time consuming. The main goals of this work were to spectrally characterize the most commonly polymers and to quantify their spectral separability that may allow to determine optimal band combinations for imaging techniques monitoring. The spectral signatures of microplastics have been analysed in laboratory, both in dry condition and on water surface, using a full spectrum spectroradiometer. The theoretical use of operational satellite images for remote sensing monitoring was investigated by quantifying the spectral separability achievable by their sensors. The WorldView-3 sensor appears the most suitable for the monitoring but better average spectral separability are expected using the recently released PRISMA images. This research was preparatory to further outdoor experiments needed to better simulate the real acquisition condition.