Frank O. Nitsche

Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory
of Columbia University
My Home

Hudson River Benthic Mapping Project


In 1998 the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation through the Hudson River Estuary Program began mapping the submerged aquatic habitats of the Hudson River Estuary. The initial phase of the project mapped 40 miles of the river with a suite of geophysical tools including multibeam swath mapping, sidescan sonar, and subbottom profiling using CHIRP and ground-penetrating radar. The geophysical data has been supplemented with sediment profile imagery (SPI) and sediment sampling including cores and grabs. The next phase of the program that began 2001 is using these tools to complete the baseline mapping of the estuary from the Battery to Troy and will include pilot studies of temporal change and invertebrate habitat analysis. Data products include acoustic images and interpretive maps. The latter include maps of anthropogenic deposits, recently deposited fine-grained sediments, sediment grain size, bedforms, and river bottom morphology.

Impressions from the survey

taking  cores
Grab samples
taking grab samples
example of Chirp seismic profile

In collaboration with:

  • State University New York (SUNY), Stony Brooks
  • DEC New York

Frank Nitsche - last update 9/27/2005