Detailed geomorphological mapping with Kinematic GPS. Examples from Livingston Island, Antarctic

  • Gonçalo Teles Vieira
  • Miguel Ramos
  • Jorge Gárate
Keywords: Kynematic GPS, geomorphological mapping, Livingston Island, Antarctic


The detailed geomorphological mapping of landforms and deposits is widespread in Quaternary geomorphology studies. It consists on the precise representation of the spatial position of geomorphological information and their characterization (e.g. topography, hydrology, morphometry, morphography, morphogenesis,morphochronology and morphodynamics) in large-scale maps (usually 1:5,000 to 1:25,000).The data is collectcd using both remote sensing (aerial photo interpretation, satellite images, etc.) and detailed field surveys. However, in areas without topographic maps, or where the scale of the existing is too small, it becomes very difficult, or even impossible to make a detailed geomorphological survey. But even in areas with good topographic data, the precise location of small or very irregular landforms and deposits is frequently difficult. The recent development of high precision GPS (Global Positioning System) allows the cartographic produclion with an accuracy that could only be achieved using traditional geodetic surveys. The main advantage is the much raster working procedure and direct data storage in a digital format. The later can easily be integrated in a Geographical lnlormation System. The installation of a Kynematic GPS in the Spanish Antartic Station (Livingston Island, South Shetlands) in the Austral summer of 1999-2000, made its use possible in the framework of the geomorphological survey that was being conducted at lhe time. ln this paper the application of the Kynematic GPS system is explained and two examples of detailed geomorphological maps at the scale 1:5,000 produced using this technique are presented.


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How to Cite
Vieira, G., Ramos, M., & Gárate, J. (2001). Detailed geomorphological mapping with Kinematic GPS. Examples from Livingston Island, Antarctic. Estudos Do Quaternário / Quaternary Studies, (4), 35-42.