Welcome to the Laboratory for Terrestrial Remote Sensing (LTRS)!
Our goal is to develop a nationally and internationally recognized research and education programs in terrestrial remote sensing through conducting scientific research, generating scholarly publications, and delivering high quality educations.
Our research interests are in terrestrial remote sensing and quantitative modeling in natural resources analysis and mapping. Particular areas of interests include remote sensing of the dynamics of landscape and land-cover/land-use change (LCLUC). LCLUC is an interdisciplinary scientific theme that includes to perform repeated inventories of landscape change from space; to develop scientific understanding and models necessary to simulate the processes taking place; to evaluate consequences of observed and predicted changes; and to further understand consequences on environmental goods and services and management of natural resources. LCLUC research is critical to improve our understanding of human interaction with the environment, and provide a scientific foundation for sustainability, vulnerability and resilience of land systems and their use.
Our research interests include development of modeling mechanisms to bridge driving forces and consequences of land-cover changes so that the human impacts on environments and ecosystems can be effectively understood and modeled. Our research projects also address issues such as impacts of urban development and increasing impervious surface areas on forest ecosystems and coastal environments, in landscape characterization and vegetation mapping for habitat modeling and biodiversity conservation, and in applications of geoinformation technologies for sustainable development. Our most recent major project, funded by NASA, is to develop a decision support system for monitoring, reporting and forecasting ecological conditions of the Appalachian National Scenic Trail. Our projects are approached by integration of multispectral, multitemporal, multisensor airborne and space-borne remote sensing data, GPS-guided in situ observations, and GIS modeling.
LTRS shares the lab space with the Environmental Data Center. Two groups of people (faculty, students and staff members) are virtually working in the same lab for a variety of projects using geospatial information technologies.