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Application of GPS and GIS in satellite Remote Sensing assessment of land use and land resource pattern in the limestone mining area and environs at Wadi, Gulbarga district, Karnataka

Application of GPS and GIS in satellite Remote Sensing assessment of land use and land resource pattern in the limestone mining area and environs at Wadi, Gulbarga district, Karnataka

V. Raghavswamy
V. Raghavswamy

Rajiv Kumar
Rajiv Kumar

Rakesh Paliwal
Rakesh Paliwal

National Remote Sensing Agency
Dept. of Space, Govt. of India
Balanagar, Hyderabad, 500 037
A.P., India
[email protected]

Global Positioning System has come as an important tool in land use/land cover study by Satellite Remote
Sensing and GIS techniques. In the present study of land resource and land use pattern assessment of Wadi
Limestone Mines and cement plant, IRS 1-D LISS – III and PAN merged data of December 2000 is used.
Handheld GPS (Holux GM – 100) is used for correction of raw satellite imagery and identification of
smaller land use on the ground features. GPS is capable of receiving and tracking 12 satellites with 5-25
meters of positional accuracy. Image processing was done in Erdas Imagine (Ver. 8.3) and spatial GIS data
creation and analysis were done in ARC INFO (Ver. 7.2.1) GIS package. Final maps prepared on 1:25,000

Study indicates 56.92% of area is under agricultural land (Cropland, Fallow land & Plantations),
wasteland (land with/without scrub, abandoned quarry) is spread over 21.21 % of the study area and built-up
area covers 386.76 ha (7.39 %) mainly distributed along the transportation network. The development
is also catalysed by the presence of limestone mines and cement plant which has provided an opportunity
for ancillary activity and employment to the local population.

Mankind for their profit is continuously exploiting the natural resources. Natural resource management
connotes their optimal utilization and also conservation of resources. Both are essential for development
and achieving environmental sustainability and hence an assessment of land resources and land use pattern
is essential and important.

Encouraging emphasis on infrastructure development projects has resulted in the rapid growth of
construction sector, which in turn has increased the requirement of cement as raw material. A number of
cement industries in the vicinity of limestone (raw material) mines have been established to meet the
increasing demand. In the recent past Gulbarga district in Karnataka state, rich in limestone deposits has
attracted a development of a number limestone mines and cement industries.

Application of GPS and GIS in satellite Remote Sensing assessment of land use and land resource pattern in the limestone mining area and environs at Wadi, Gulbarga district, Karnataka

Concern about safeguarding the environment and monitoring the land use / land cover pattern change are
gaining attention. In accordance into the MOEF, Govt. of India EIA guidelines to carry current land use /
land cover assessment for an industry, going to be established, or prepared for an expansion. Wadi Cement
Works (ACC) has approached National Remote Sensing Agency (NRSA), Hyderabad to carry out the study
using remote sensing data. Satellite remote sensing technique is useful to map and monitor the natural
resources in real time and in a cost effective and unbiased manner (Lillisand, Sabins, 1999). Further, remote
sensing technology in association with Geographical Information System (GIS) and Global Positioning
System (GPS) is able to address many such issues pertaining to the management of natural resources and
environment (Burrough 2000). The study is successfully completed and the results have been submitted to
M/s ACC, Wadi (NRSA 2001).

The objective of the present paper is to evaluate the use of Global Positioning System (GPS) in land
resource mapping in conjunction with satellite remote sensing and GIS technology in the limestone mining

Study Area and its Natural Resource Setting
The study area is part of Wadi Taluk, in the Gulbarga district of Karnataka State. It covers the toposheet
number of 56 C/16, 56 D/13, 56 G/4 and 56 H/1 on 1:50,000 scale, and extends between Longitude 76 o 57′
N to 77° 0′ N and Latitude from 17° 02′ E to 17° 05′ E covering a geographical area of about 52 sq. km. The area forms the part of
deccan plateau with semi arid climate. The area receives very less
rainfall and the soil is predominantly black cotton soil (Regur)
comprising of clayey loam and clay. The temperature varies between
16° C to 46° C. The major crop grown in the area is millets and oilseeds Gram etc.

GPS Used in the Field
Global Positioning System (GPS) is operated by 24 (21 active; 3 as
spares) small satellites each transmitting radio signals at the same
two frequencies (L1 = 1575.4 Mhz; L2 = 1227.6 MHz). Each satellite
follows a circular orbit inclined 55° to the equator at an altitude of
20,200 km. The well known GPS satellite system are GLOSSNOS,
NAVSTAR etc. The present study assesses land resources, analyses
the land use/land cover pattern using Global Positioning System
(GPS). Satellite remote sensing and GIS techniques in the mining
area at Wadi, Gulbarga District, Karnataka state.

In the study for ground data collection simple handheld GPS
receiver (HOLUX – GM 100) was used. The accuracy of GPS receiver
used is ± 5 – 25 meters when it is moved within speed of 0.1m per

Materials and Methods
The basic satellite data selected is IRS 1D (LISS-III) multispectral
data and panchromatic data of December 2000 (Fig.1). The base
details were taken from the SOI mapsheets on 1:50,000 scale. The
level-III land use land cover details and the Ground Control Points
(GCP’s) for geo referencing of satellite data was collected by GPS.

The LISS – III and PAN data were merged using Brovey
technique and resample is attended by bilinear interpolation option.
The FCC was prepared by using Bands 4, 3 and 2 in ERDAS Imagine
(ver. 8.3.1).

Fig. 1
The satellite data is visually interpreted and input into the
silicon graphic (Octane) workstation for analysis using ARC-INFO
GIS (ver. 7.2.1) software.

The land use/land cover classification system developed by NRSA (1991) is modified to accommodate the level III details collected from the GPS survey.

Application of GPS and GIS in satellite Remote Sensing assessment of land use and land resource pattern in the limestone mining area and environs at Wadi, Gulbarga district, Karnataka

Results and Discussion
The description of ground features and the positional locations collected by using GPS is shown in Table – 1. The land use/land cover identified in and around 52 Sq. Km. area is shown in Table-3. The dominant class mapped is Agriculture with 2978.05 ha. (56.92 percent) followed by wasteland 1109.91 ha (21.21%), Built-up 386.76
ha (7.39%) and others 696.28 ha.(13.31 %).

The area is well connected with transport network (Table –
2). Minor roads which include Kacha road, Cart track and village
roads extend for 34.76 km length and the metal road which is major
road extends upto 20.32 km. The area is connected by rail with
Gulbarga in the North, Bangalore in the south and Hyderabad in the
east over a length of 15.94 km.

Table – I Surface features and the co-ordinates location identified using gps survey (ACC Cement Plant)

Sl. No.Description of FeaturesGeographic Locations
1.Administrative Office of ACC plant Cement works) 76° 59′ 17.6″ 17° 03′ 22.9″
2.Rail Road Over bridge near Halkatta Village 76° 59′ 24.2″ 17° 02′ 25.9″
3.Railway water filtration Plant on Wadi – Kannur Road 76° 58′ 10.3″ 17° 02′ 54″
4.Main gate of ACC Lime Stone Mines 76° 58′ 17.7″ 17° 03′ 27.5″
5. ACC water pump house at Kagina river 76° 56′ 49.5″ 17° 04′ 28.4″
6.Entrance gate of New Wadi Cement Plant 76° 59′ 37.3″ 17° 03′ 59.3″
7.Rail Road crossing near Dhangarwadi Village 76° 59′ 35.5″ 17° 04′ 22.2″
8.Control Room (New Cement Plant) 76° 59′ 49.5″ 17° 3′ 49.5″
9.Electrostatic Precipitator (New Plant) 76° 58′ 50.1″ 17° 03′ 50.9″
10.Clinker Silo (New Plant) 76° 58′ 53.7″ 17° 03′ 52.2″
11.Load Control room 76° 58′ 55.4″ 17° 03′ 49.6″
12.Pre Heater Building 76° 58′ 44.2″ 17° 03′ 47.7″
13.Sump Pump House at Sump – 1 76° 58′ 13.7″ 17° 03′ 51.1″

Built-up Land
Major built up land in the area is developed around the mining activity either associated with Wadi limestone mines or Shahabad stone quarry. Wadi, Ingalgi, Rayur, Keri Tanda and Dhangarwadi are the major human settlements in the area. All these settlements are developed along the transportation network and are spread over 386.76 ha or 7.39% of the area.

GPS is used for identifying some of the smaller units of built up features (Figure -2). The locations of Water pump house, Loco shed locations, Water filtration house, Scrap yard and Shale stack are surveyed using GPS are shown in Table – 1

Table – 2

1. Railway line 15.94
2. Major Road 20.32
3. Minor Road 34.76
4. Mine Road 7.53
5. River / Stream 21.17

Application of GPS and GIS in satellite Remote Sensing assessment of land use and land resource pattern in the limestone mining area and environs at Wadi, Gulbarga district, Karnataka

Agricultural Land
Agricultural land use by and large is dependent on the agro-climatic conditions prevalent in the area. The area remains dry through out the year and it receives rainfall only during retreating monsoon. The present land use/ cover appears to have well adapted to topography, soil and rainfall pattern, and the cultural practices of the people in the area. The major crops grown in the area are Bajra,
Toor, Groundnut, Sesame, Castor, Black Gram, Cotton, Ragi, Linseed and Bengal Gram etc. An area of 2978.05 ha or 56.92%is under this class.

This is further classified as: Cropland (with crop & mixed crop), Fallow Land and plantation. Cropland (with crop) is that area with standing crop fully grown/ready for harvest as on the date of satellite pass and cropland (mixed) is that areas wherein the area is devoid of any crop cover on the date of satellite pass. The total estimated area for both the classes is shown in Table-2.

All those lands without standing crop and with apparent field boundary is identified as fallow land. These areas appear greenish blue to blue depending on the soil and surface moisture. An area of 549.18 ha (10.50 %) is observed under this class.

Plantation is done in and around the mine lease area mainly to promote the environmental condition of the area. Some of these have been done around the mine pit and plant colony and are very well thriving to the environmental conditions. Main species planted are Eucalyptus, Cassia, Prosopis species etc. The total extent covered by this category is 47.80 ha. (0.91%).

Wastelands are one of the important class in the area. It covers an area of 1109.91 ha or 21.21%.

Land with scrub is the land, which occupy relatively high topographic locations. Lantana and Ipomea spp. Of scrub is growing throughout the area. This class is distributed all over the area and covers an area of 430.43 ha (8.23%).

Land without scrub is the area with similar topography features as former but is devoid of any vegetative growth except during rainy season. One particular feature of this class is that it is subjected to severe sheet erosion, with little or no soil cover. It covers an area of 658.10 ha or 12.58%.

Table – 3 Estimates of Area Under Landuse/Land Cover

Plant Colony42.010.74
Loco shed13.800.26
Processing Unit76.37 1.46
Captive Power Plant3.89 0.07
Transportation 79.161.51
Built-up (Rural)88.24 1.69
2.Agricultural LandCropland (with crop) 1810.00 34.60
Cropland (mixed)570.57 10.91
Fallow Land549.1810.50
3.WastelandLand with scrub430.438.23
Land without scrub658.1012.58
Abandoned Quarry17.50 0.33
Quarry Pit3.670.07
4.Water bodiesRiver/Stream60.80 1.16
60.80 1.16
5.OthersStone Quarry 204.47 3.91
Mine Pit67.51 1.29
Industrial Area108.71 2.18
Vacant Land/Sparse Plantation 291.79 5.58
Shale Stack3.750.07
Total 5229.00100.00

Application of GPS and GIS in satellite Remote Sensing assessment of land use and land resource pattern in the limestone mining area and environs at Wadi, Gulbarga district, Karnataka

Abandoned quarries are which are uneconomical for excavation and are abandoned after certain depth and covers an area of 17.50 ha or 0.33%.

River and streams are classified as water bodies and river Kagina and Rawoor Nala flown through the area. The area under water bodies is around 60.80 ha. (1.16%).

As the area is rich in limestone deposits a number of small scale stone quarries are prevalent in the area. Limestone is quarried and excavated as stone tiles to be used as flooring/roofing material in house construction. Other class includes stone quarry (major source of employment) and the stone polishing units. The famous Sahabad stone (Limestone) is mined in the area and which finds its uses in house construction as floor tile, roof tile and kitchen base. It covers an area of 204.47 ha or 3.91%.

GPS has enabled the identification of geographical locations and positions of smaller units of built up features on satellite imagery. Agricultural land is major unit in the area (56.92%), followed by wasteland (21.21%). Quarry and quarry related activity is major source of employment and covers 696.28 ha (13.31%).

With the improvement in accuracy of GPS data and availability of high resolution satellite data (better than 5 meter resolution) technology is certainly going to provide better results for mankind.

The authors would like to place on record their sincere thanks to Dr. RR Navalgund, Director NRSA for permitting and encouraging to carry out the study; Sri S. K. Bhan (Deputy Director, Applications) for his guidance and help. Our thanks to Sri U. C. Deveshwar, Sr. Vice President, The Associated Cement Company Ltd. for sponsoring the study. Thanks are also due to Dr. NC Gautam, former Group Director, LUC & MP, NRSA and other colleagues in Land Use Division for their guidance and support.


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