Analysing physical and bio-chemical parameters of Latvian and Estonian lakes



In 2018, IES researcher Tuuli Soomets organized 10 field campaigns to research and analyse physical and bio-chemical parameters of 4 lakes in Latvia and Estonia – Lubans, Burtnieks, Lake Razna and Lake Võrtsjärv. The research results will help to analyse the use of satellite data for lake monitoring.

The field research campaigns lasted from April until the end of November 2018. During this period, one of the campaigns on Lake Lubans was carried out simultaneously with airborne remote sensing data collection, thus giving additional information layer between field data and satellite data. Dr. Soomets will use the field research information to develop satellite data based monitoring tool for lake monitoring. She has been testing European Space Agency’s Sentinel-2 and Sentinel-3 satellite data. To understand, does the information in satellite data is telling the truth, the researcher needed to collect and analyse field data.

To gain physical parameters, the researcher measured water transparency, temperature and oxygen. For bio-chemical parameters, she observed phytoplankton pigments and total nitrogen and phosphorus concentrations, total suspended and dissolved matter, etc. The most significant results are related to the chlorophyll concentration that is related to algal blooming. Results shows that the highest values of chlorophyll concentration in Latvian lakes were in August 2018, however, in Estonian lake the maximum was just in October. The biggest concentrations of chlorophyll between the researched lakes were in Lake Burntieks, especially in August, but its’ average chlorophyll concentration was similar to Võrtsjärv in Estonia.

Find full report of Dr. Soomets expeditions in 2018 here.

The research is a part of the project “ICT-based remote sensing tool for retrieving water quality products for lake research and monitoring” (FLUID), No. Agreement with State Education Development Agency of the Republic of Latvia No. The project is funded by the European Regional Development Fund and partly funded by State budget and the Institute for Environmental Solutions.

Find more about the FLUID project here.