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Regional thermal inertia mapping over the Indian subcontinent using INSAT-1D VHRR data and its possible geological applications

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Thermal inertia is a measure of the resistance power of a material to changes in temperature, and this property of a material is very important from the aspects of hydrological and geological studies. Generation of thermal inertia images and their possible geological application has been attempted over the Indian peninsula and its surroundings using INSAT-1D (Indian National Satellite) VHRR (Very High Resolution Radiometer) day-time and consecutive nighttime data. Using the concepts of energy balance computation and also using the procedures involved in albedo computation and the digital registration of day time and pre-dawn imagery, a thermal inertia map over the whole peninsula and its surroundings has been generated. An attempt has been made to correlate the thermal inertia anomalies with sub-surface structures. The analysis done over the subcontinent shows the possibility of delineation of subsurface structures by thermal inertia mapping.

Document Type: Research Article


Affiliations: Earth Sciences and Hydrology Division, Marine and Water Resources Group, Remote Sensing Applications Area, Space Applications (ISRO), Ahmedabad Centre 380 015, India; e-mail:

Publication date: 2003-06-01

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