Creating GeoTIFF Photomosaics from Seafloor Video


The Massachusetts Coastal Zone Management–U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) Seafloor Mapping Cooperative has collected geophysical and sampling data over 1350 sq km of seafloor in five survey areas within coastal Massachusetts since 2003. While most of the spatial data (bathymetry grids, backscatter imagery, survey tracklines, sediment sample and bottom photograph locations) are easily distributed in USGS Open-File Reports, there has not been, until now, an efficient method for distributing the vast amount of seafloor video collected by the USGS’s SEABed Observation and Sampling System (SEABOSS). In a typical survey, 10-15 hours (>60GB) of video is recorded, but the large file sizes prevented these data from being included in publications. Creating GeoTIFF photo mosaics from the SEABOSS videos has emerged as the most promising method for managing and distributing the video imagery. The creation of photo mosaics from the seafloor videos has been streamlined using a series of video mosaicking programs developed at the University of New Hampshire’s Center for Coastal and Ocean Mapping. The mosaicking software performs an automated frame-to-frame registration, which can be reviewed and manually revised in a standalone program. Coordinates parsed from the ship’s Global Positioning System are used to georeference the final TIFF images. The mosaics can be viewed within a GIS enabling end-users to identify video segments of interest quickly and efficiently, eliminating the need to review hours of video. The full-resolution, raw videos are archived and can be requested from the USGS – Woods Hole Science Center Data Library.


Center for Coastal and Ocean Mapping

Publication Date


Journal Title

Coastal Geotools



Conference Date

Mar 2 - Mar 5, 2009

Publisher Place

Myrtle Beach, SC, USA


U.S. Geological Survey

Document Type

Conference Proceeding

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