Melbourne Water support for Honours Thesis projects in 2020
Melbourne Water is wanting to provide support for Honours projects in Geography (note that is a year-long research project) for 2020. Supervision would be with Professor Ian Rutherfurd and Dr Kathryn Russell School of Geography.
Project 1 & 2: There is a new focus from MW on erosion and sediment into Westernport Bay from agriculture and gullies in the catchment leading to the two following projects.
- How active is my gully? Mapping rate of incision and recovery of gullies, and connectivity of gully sediment sources to sinks in Westernport catchment, using GIS analysis and field verification.
- Runoff in transition: Understanding the temporal dynamics of the hydrologic transition from agricultural to urban land, using infiltration testing of soils, and GIS mapping of impervious surface change through the urban development process.
Project 3: MW is also interested in understanding the changes and the form/morphology of urban streams in Melbourne.
- Remote sensing of ecologically-relevant geomorphic attributes of Melbourne streams that capture habitat availability and channel complexity. It would incorporate field assessment of geomorphic complexity at a sample of sites and compare that to remotely sensed metrics derived from LiDAR, IR or visible imagery using automated or semi-automated GIS processes. The aim would be to find a metric or set of metrics that best represent geomorphic complexity or habitat availability but can be rolled out broadly without field assessment.
Students on any of these projects would work as part of a research team with excellent support, access to resources, as well as funding for any costs associated with the project. Students would learn skills in GIS, remote sensing, have plenty of fieldwork, and make good contacts with the water industry.