Chlorophyll a (Chl-a) concentration, which reflects the biomass and primary productivity of phytoplankton in water, is an important water quality parameter to assess the eutrophication status of water. The band combinations shown in the images of Donghu Lake (Wuhan City, China) captured by Landsat satellites from 1987 to 2018 were analyzed. The (B4 − B3)/(B4 + B3) [(Green
)] band combination was employed to construct linear, power, exponential, logarithmic and cubic polynomial models based on Chl-a values in Donghu Lake in April 2016. The correlation coefficient (R2
), the relative error (RE) and the root mean square error (RMSE) of the cubic model were 0.859, 9.175% and 11.194 μg/L, respectively and those of the validation model were 0.831, 6.509% and 19.846μg/L, respectively. Remote sensing images from 1987 to 2018 were applied to the model and the spatial distribution of Chl-a concentrations in spring and autumn of these years was obtained. At the same time, the eutrophication status of Donghu Lake was monitored and evaluated based on the comprehensive trophic level index (TLI
). The results showed that the TLI
(∑) of Donghu Lake in April 2016 was 63.49 and the historical data on Chl-a concentration showed that Donghu Lake had been eutrophic. The distribution of Chl-a concentration in Donghu Lake was affected by factors such as construction of bridges and dams, commercial activities and enclosure culture in the lake. The overall distribution of Chl-a concentration in each sub-lake was higher than that in the main lake region and Chl-a concentration was highest in summer, followed by spring, autumn and winter. Based on the data of three long-term (2005–2018) monitoring points in Donghu Lake, the matching patterns between meteorological data and Chl-a concentration were analyzed. It revealed that the Chl-a concentration was relatively high in warmer years or rainy years. The long-term measured data also verified the accuracy of the cubic model for Chl-a concentration. The R2
, RE and RMSE of the validation model were 0.641, 2.518% and 22.606 μg/L, respectively, which indicated that it was feasible to use Landsat images to retrieve long-term Chl-a concentrations. Based on longitudinal remote sensing data from 1987 to 2018, long-term and large-scale dynamic monitoring of Chl-a concentrations in Donghu Lake was carried out in this study, providing reference and guidance for lake water quality management in the future.
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