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Open AccessArticle

Obtaining Hyperspectral Signatures for Seafloor Massive Sulphide Exploration

1
Department of Marine Technology, Faculty of Engineering, Norwegian University of Science and Technology (NTNU), Otto Nielsens Veg 10, 7052 Trondheim, Norway
2
Department of Geoscience and Petroleum, Faculty of Engineering, Norwegian University of Science and Technology (NTNU), Sem Sælands Veg 1, 7491 Trondheim, Norway
3
Centre for Autonomous Marine Operations and Systems, Department of Marine Technology, Norwegian University of Science and Technology (NTNU), Otto Nielsens Vei 10, NO-7491 Trondheim, Norway
4
Arctic Technology Department, University Centre in Svalbard (UNIS), P.O Box 156, NO-9171 Longyearbyen, Norway
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Minerals 2019, 9(11), 694; https://doi.org/10.3390/min9110694 (registering DOI)
Received: 22 September 2019 / Revised: 31 October 2019 / Accepted: 6 November 2019 / Published: 10 November 2019
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Hyperspectral Imaging for Mineral Mapping)
Seafloor massive sulphide (SMS) deposits are hosts to a wide range of economic minerals, and may become an important resource in the future. The exploitation of these resources is associated with considerable expenses, and a return on investment may depend on the availability of multiple deposits. Therefore, efficient exploration methodologies for base metal deposits are important for future deep sea mining endeavours. Underwater hyperspectral imaging (UHI) has been demonstrated to be able to differentiate between different types of materials on the seafloor. The identification of possible end-members from field data requires prior information in the form of representative signatures for distinct materials. This work presents hyperspectral imaging applied to a selection of materials from the Loki’s Castle active hydrothermal vent site in a laboratory setting. A methodology for compensating for systematic effects and producing the reflectance spectra is detailed, and applied to recover the spectral signatures from the samples. The materials investigated were found to be distinguishable using unsupervised dimensionality reduction methods, and may be used as a reference for future field application.
Keywords: seafloor sulphides; underwater hyperspectral imaging; spectroscopy; reflectance; Norway; Arctic Mid-Ocean Ridge seafloor sulphides; underwater hyperspectral imaging; spectroscopy; reflectance; Norway; Arctic Mid-Ocean Ridge
MDPI and ACS Style

Sture, Ø.; Snook, B.; Ludvigsen, M. Obtaining Hyperspectral Signatures for Seafloor Massive Sulphide Exploration. Minerals 2019, 9, 694.

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