Scientific Publication: Low-Cost Sensors for Monitoring Coastal Climate Hazards – A Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis

SCORE project partner, Atlantic Technological University, published a paper in the Sensors journal. This paper is available in open access.


Unequivocal change in the climate system has put coastal regions around the world at increasing risk from climate-related hazards. Monitoring the coast is often difficult and expensive, resulting in sparse monitoring equipment lacking in sufficient temporal and spatial coverage. Thus, low-cost methods to monitor the coast at finer temporal and spatial resolution are imperative for climate resilience along the world’s coasts. Exploiting such low-cost methods for the development of early warning support could be invaluable to coastal settlements. This paper aims to provide the most up-to-date low-cost techniques developed and used in the last decade for monitoring coastal hazards and their forcing agents via systematic review of the peer-reviewed literature in three scientific databases: Scopus, Web of Science and ScienceDirect. A total of 60 papers retrieved from these databases through the preferred reporting items for systematic reviews and meta-analyses (PRISMA) protocol were analysed in detail to yield different categories of low-cost sensors. These sensors span the entire domain for monitoring coastal hazards, as they focus on monitoring coastal zone characteristics (e.g., topography), forcing agents (e.g., water levels), and the hazards themselves (e.g., coastal flooding). It was found from the meta-analysis of the retrieved papers that terrestrial photogrammetry, followed by aerial photogrammetry, was the most widely used technique for monitoring different coastal hazards, mainly coastal erosion and shoreline change. Different monitoring techniques are available to monitor the same hazard/forcing agent, for instance, unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs), time-lapse cameras, and wireless sensor networks (WSNs) for monitoring coastal morphological changes such as beach erosion, creating opportunities to not only select but also combine different techniques to meet specific monitoring objectives. The sensors considered in this paper are useful for monitoring the most pressing challenges in coastal zones due to the changing climate. Such a review could be extended to encompass more sensors and variables in the future due to the systematic approach of this review. This study is the first to systematically review a wide range of low-cost sensors available for the monitoring of coastal zones in the context of changing climate and is expected to benefit coastal researchers and managers to choose suitable low-cost sensors to meet their desired objectives for the regular monitoring of the coast to increase climate resilience.


Title: Low-Cost Sensors for Monitoring Coastal Climate Hazards: A Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis

Authors: Tasneem Ahmed, Leo Creedon, Salem S. Gharbia

Cite as: Ahmed, T.; Creedon, L.; Gharbia, S.S. Low-Cost Sensors for Monitoring Coastal Climate Hazards: A Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis. Sensors 2023, 23, 1717.