The US Geological Survey Coastal and Marine Science Center, located on the WHOI campus, conducts research to assess natural hazards to coastal regions. Our recent projects have used imagery from unoccupied aerial systems (drones) or occupied planes combined with multi-view photogrammetry (also known as structure from motion) to make super-high resolution maps of beaches, dunes, and wetlands. In turn, these maps are used to evaluate changes caused by storms and as input to numerical models of morphological evolution, including coastal erosion. Summer students can choose from several topics using data from local beaches and wetlands or larger-scale projects on the US east coast. These include analysis of images using structure from motion, classification of landscapes using machine learning, analysis of oceanographic data (waves, currents, water levels) and their relation to coastal changes, or running and evaluation of numerical models for waves, sediment movement, and morphological change. Fieldwork on beaches or marshes may be an option. Enthusiasm for image processing, map making, and coding (Matlab, Python) is necessary, but extensive experience with specific tools is not. Students will gain proficiency in one or more of: coastal oceanography and morphology, image processing, geographic information systems, coding in Matlab or Python, structure-from-motion analysis, and machine learning.
For more information on USGS research visit: