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Department of Geography and Geospatial Sciences

Remote Sensing Research Laboratory

rsrl logoFor over twenty years, remote sensing has been a part of the research and teaching curriculum at Kansas State University.  Beginning in the late 1970s, courses in remote sensing were taught by Dr. Stephen Stover.  The first departmental research laboratory dedicated to remote sensing was established in 1982 by Dr. M. Duane Nellis.  Dr. Nellis' pioneering work in agricultural and rural land cover change helped to establish Kansas State University as a leading institution for remote sensing research.  In 1993, Dr. Douglas Goodin joined the faculty at Kansas State University and in 1996 he assumed the directorship of the Remote Sensing Research Lab (RSRL). 

Under Dr. Goodin's leadership, RSRL has grown to include a number of image processing workstations equipped with a full array of spatial analysis and visualization hardware and software.  The lab also houses a comprehensive collection of remote sensing imagery, including extensive coverage of Kansas and the Great Plains, as well as imagery collections for selected sites in Europe, South Asia, Africa, and South America.  This image archive is continually updated as the research programs RSRL are expanded.  Since its formation, RSRL has been involved in research projects in 8 countries on three continents.  Currently, RSRL researchers are involved in three major research programs covering areas as diverse as disease ecology, grassland/range management, large scale canopy phenology, and subtropical deforestation.

The image processing facilities of RSRL are supported by a full array of field remote sensing instruments, including a state-of-the-art Analytical Spatial Devices Fieldspec FR portable spectrometer, two Ocean Optics USB-2000 spectrometers, and three Cropscan spectroradiometers (MSR-16, MSR-5, and MSR-87).  These portable radiometers are supported by a number of instruments for making in-situ measurements of canopy and soil properties, including a line PAR ceptometer, flourometer, portable TDR probe, portable nitrogen analyzer, and a variety of specialized digital cameras for recording canopy density and greenness.

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