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Mapping Changes in a Recovering Mine Site with Hyperspectral Airborne HyMap Imagery (Sotiel, SW Spain)

Instituto Geológico y Minero de España (IGME), Geological Survey of Spain, La Calera 1, 28760 Tres Cantos, E-28003 Madrid, Spain
Facultad de Ciencias Ambientales, Universidad de León, Campus de Vegazana s/n, E-24071 León, Spain
Remote Sensing Data Centre, German Aerospace Research, Deustsche Zentrum für Luft und Raumfahrt (DLR), P.O. Box 1116, D-82234 Wessling, Germany
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Minerals 2014, 4(2), 313-329;
Received: 31 October 2013 / Revised: 2 April 2014 / Accepted: 10 April 2014 / Published: 16 April 2014
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Mine Waste Characterization, Management and Remediation)
PDF [5241 KB, uploaded 16 April 2014]


Hyperspectral high spatial resolution HyMap data are used to map mine waste from massive sulfide ore deposits, mostly abandoned, on the Iberian Pyrite Belt (southwest Spain). Mine dams, mill tailings and mine dumps in variable states of pyrite oxidation are recognizable. The interpretation of hyperspectral remote sensing requires specific algorithms able to manage high dimensional data compared to multispectral data. The routine of image processing methods used to extract information from hyperspectral data to map geological features is explained, as well as the sequence of algorithms used to produce maps of the mine sites. The mineralogical identification capability of algorithms to produce maps based on archive spectral libraries is discussed. Trends of mineral growth differ spectrally over time according to the geological setting and the recovery state of the mine site. Subtle mineralogical changes are enhanced using the spectral response as indicators of pyrite oxidation intensity of the mine waste piles and pyrite mud tailings. The changes in the surface of the mill tailings deserve a detailed description, as the surfaces are inaccessible to direct observation. Such mineralogical changes respond faithfully to industrial activities or the influence of climate when undisturbed by human influence. View Full-Text
Keywords: imaging spectroscopy; mine site recovery; change detection; pyrite weathering imaging spectroscopy; mine site recovery; change detection; pyrite weathering

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Buzzi, J.; Riaza, A.; García-Meléndez, E.; Weide, S.; Bachmann, M. Mapping Changes in a Recovering Mine Site with Hyperspectral Airborne HyMap Imagery (Sotiel, SW Spain). Minerals 2014, 4, 313-329.

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