The geological extension of the Alburz sulphur deposit depicted by hyperspectral remote sensing and GIS: Development of new methods for interactive mineral exploration with UAV in inaccessible areas of Afghanistan
Gholam Farooq Khpalwak, Gerhard Bax, Ahmad Khalid Mowahed
Our study has shown that even a relatively inexpensive UAV has great potential for detailed geological investigations in partly inaccessible terrain. Obtained still imagery, preferably in raw format, can be post-processed to achieve high resolution mosaics, and through overlapping imagery a digital photogrammetric analysis is possible. Due to the present poor security situation at the Alburz site, we decided to do field work in another area, which exposes similar rocks from the same stratigraphic level. Parallel to our own field documentation we examined and analysed freely available space borne imagery from different sensors covering larger, adjacent areas. We examined also pre-processed HyMap data registered on-board an air borne platform over vast areas of Afghanistan. In these data it was possible to independently identify our small gypsum deposit but not the Alburz sulphur deposit itself. None of the methods enabled us to detect further outcrops of sulphur or gypsum layers in the vicinity of along strike.