Sediments that are dredged during routine operations for maintenance of harbour areas are generally contaminated, even in consideration of given standards or regulations that do not allow their free disposal in the aquatic system. Therefore, sediments coming from dredging operations have to be properly characterised since their final destination depends on the level of contamination.
Due to the quantity of dredged sediments and the number of contaminants to determine, analyses carried out for characterisation are expensive and time-consuming.
In this research work, a new approach for a prompt evaluation of sediments’ contamination based on hyperspectral analysis is proposed. Results of laboratory tests carried out on marine sediments, before and after chemical-physical treatments, show a correlation among the value of reflectance, obtained by hyperspectral analysis, and the level of contamination and size distribution of sediments.