Using viewshed analysis for river monitoring and management

Yi Jen Lee, Chih I. Fan, Hui Ju Ho, Li Yu Chang, Yao Cheng Kuo, Lung Cheng Chen, Hsi Hsin Hsu, Chien Hsin Liao, Chi Farn Chen

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contributionpeer-review


Rivers are valuable and important water resources for human beings, but sustainable development and usage of the river has become a complex issue in modem times. River usage includes both legal (agricultural water, recreation and tourism), and illegal (quarrying, and dumping of waste into the river) activities all of which need to be monitored. However, the area is large, including the many tributaries draining into large river basins, which, in Taiwan are comprised of complex tectonic terrain. It costs money and time for river patrols to monitor these areas. The objective of this study is to develop a Viewshed analysis method based on the Geographic Information Systems (GIS) that can be used for locating optimized observation points to facilitate carrying out river patrols. Viewshed analysis can be utilized to define both the visible and invisible range from each observation point by combining digital terrain model (DTM) and road vector data. The method is designed to first locate several observation points about 2 km along the closest road near the river, after which Viewshed analysis is run. If there are some invisible areas left after the first Viewshed analysis, new observation points can be added and the Viewshed analysis run again. This process is iterated until the whole river area is visible. This study attempts to define the optimal observation points for river patrolmen in order to save time and resources.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publication32nd Asian Conference on Remote Sensing 2011, ACRS 2011
Number of pages5
StatePublished - 2011
Event32nd Asian Conference on Remote Sensing 2011, ACRS 2011 - Tapei, Taiwan
Duration: 3 Oct 20117 Oct 2011

Publication series

Name32nd Asian Conference on Remote Sensing 2011, ACRS 2011


Conference32nd Asian Conference on Remote Sensing 2011, ACRS 2011


  • GIS
  • River monitoring
  • Viewshed analysis


Dive into the research topics of 'Using viewshed analysis for river monitoring and management'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this