Remote Sensing and Geographic Information Systems

Remote sensing of tropical forests since the early 1970’s has focused on Tropical Moist ecosystems and Rainforests with little emphasis on Tropical Dry Forests. The fundamental goal of our research agenda in this area is to improve our limited knowledge of how succession is characterized by Earth Observation platforms. We are interested in using advanced technologies to understand how this ecosystem recovers over time and how different successional stages manifest themselves when observed through different remote sensing platforms, and their derived data products.

Three questions are addressed in this research area using different spatial and temporal data sets:

  1. How do changes in ecosystem complexity manifest themselves at the regional level (found using hyper-spectral and emerging LiDAR technologies)?
  2. How does Tropical Dry Forest complexity manifest within multi temporal Earth observation time series?
  3. How can we model those linkages (ground and orbit) using advanced analytics and machine approaches?

In addition to these landscape level questions, we conduct a significant amount of research exploring the linkages between phenology, hyperspectral signatures, and leaf traits in all our research sites.