Artificial reef effectiveness changes among types as revealed by underwater hyperspectral imagery

TitleArtificial reef effectiveness changes among types as revealed by underwater hyperspectral imagery
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2023
AuthorsRiera, E, Hubas, C, Ungermann, M, Rigot, G, Pey, A, Francour, P, Rossi, F
JournalRestoration Ecology
Date PublishedDec-07-2024

Artificial reefs (ARs) are designed to mimic natural habitats and promote marine life. Their effectiveness is however debatable and can depend on factors such as structural complexity and construction material. Old artificial reefs (OARs) were made of concrete mold of simple geometric shapes, limiting their ability to mimic the complexity of natural reefs. Recent advancements in three-dimentional (3D)-printing technology have enabled the creation of 3D-printed artificial reefs (3DRs) with biocompatible material and complex structures that can better simulate the natural habitats. We employed underwater hyperspectral technology to estimate the performance of these reefs and compare the benthic photosynthetic signal of natural reefs (NATs) with those of ARs (OARs and 3DRs) in coastal area of the north-western Mediterranean (France and Monaco Principality). We expected differences in reflectance signals between OARs and NATs, and signals closer to NATs in 3DRs than OARs. Underwater hyperspectral technology was able to detect higher chlorophyll-a derived signals on NATs than OARs. Moreover, the magnitude of differences between 3DRs and NATs was smaller than that between OARs and NATs. Although ARs were not capable of mimicking natural reefs, the use of 3D-printed ARs might ameliorate their effectiveness for coastal reconciliation.

Short TitleRestoration Ecology
Catégorie HCERES
ACL - Peer-reviewed articles
Publication coopération et recherche SUD