Remote sensing

can allow us to better understand sensitivities of global ecosystems to human activities, including climate change and help us to use our resources more responsbily  

Visible and Near Infrared Images

taken from satellites can be used to map landscape disturbance and fragmentation

Light detection and Ranging (LiDAR)

is a remote sensing technqiue that allows us to obtain estimates of canopy structure at unprecedented levels of detail

Clouds and atmosphere

are an important aspect of remote sensing and need to be considered when making measurements from satellite data

Airborne and terrestrial measurements

of canopy structure from Light Detection and Ranging (LiDAR) can provide full views of the canopy architecture. This allows us to draw conclusions about the functioning of vegetation

Satellite data

acquired from multiple look angles provide global views of vegetation. This helps us to measure changes in vegetation over time and analyze the spatial relationships between different landscape elements


Remote sensing is interdiscplinary in that it connects physical properties of remotely sensed measurements with ecological/environmental questions to solve pressing research issues on from landscape to global scales. At the remote sensing laboratory of Oregon State University's college of Forestry, we collaborate with a broad range of researchers nationally and internationally to advance the knowledge in this field.

Tower based observations

are an important to help us understand how observations made at the stand level scale across the landscape

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The remote sensing laboratory at Oregon State University's College of Forestry uses satellite, airborne and tower-based remote sensing to better understand functioning of forest ecosystems and terrestrial vegetation. Our research spans a large range of topics from mapping landscape disturbance to carbon, water and energy cycling of terrestrial ecosystems to measuring forest structure and productivity at stand level, landscape and global scales. The objective of our work is to better understand Earth System functioning in the context of global change and to allow improved modeling of ecosystem behaviour from regional to global scales. 

The work undertaken at the remote sensing laboratory is very much interdisciplinary in that it builds on mechanistic approaches based on plant physiology, ecosystem and atmospheric sciences as well as radiative transfer physical properties of radiation.

Our lab consists of an international group of MSc, and PhD students in addition to postdoctoral fellows and visiting scholars. For more information, please contact Dr. Thomas Hilker or other members of the lab.