Earth Science & Remote Sensing

Arizona Environment provides unparalleled expertise in the study of Earth and planetary sciences including development and application of remote sensing techniques, spatial data analysis and modeling.  As a major sponsor of U.S. spacecraft missions and spatial observing systems, UArizona is renowned for Earth, Planetary, and Optical Sciences, Astronomy, and the Earth Dynamics Observatory.  

Our faculty and researchers integrate across Earth and planetary sciences, combining geophysics, geochemistry, engineering, geology, and astronomy to study Earth and other planetary systems within and beyond our solar system. We work at the forefront of scientific discovery to understand the nature, genesis, and history of Earth and the solar system, and how the environment and biota at the Earth’s surface evolves and responds to a changing climate and growing population. UArizona promotes both basic and applied research, incorporating geospatial technologies and observations, field and remote sensing data and analysis, modeling of coupled human and natural systems, and decision support.


Research Spotlights in Earth Science & Remote Sensing 

Willem van Leeuwen

School of Geography and Development  

van Leeuwen is developing new drought and ecosystem monitoring products based on the integration of climate data and remotely sensed land surface temperature and biophysical data.

Learn more

Jack Holt

Lunar and Planetary Laboratory and Geosciences 

Holt is quantifying the links between regional climate, precipitation, tectonics, and the mass balance of ice sheets and glaciers.

Learn more

Ali Behrangi

Hydrology and Atmospheric Sciences

Behrangi’s research interests include multi-sensor multi-spectral remote sensing of precipitation and using advanced satellite and in-situ data to improve quantification of hydrologic variables.

Learn more

Kamel Didan

Agricultural Biosystems Engineering  

Didan’s research explores the use of drones as a fast and cost-effective platform for land surface characterization, precision mapping, precision agriculture, and for the low-cost validation of global remote sensing data. 

Learn more

Armin Sorooshian

Chemical and Environmental Engineering

Sorooshian researches the effect of aerosol particles on the environment, clouds and rainfall, climate, and public health, using a suite of synergistic methods, including ground and airborne field measurements, modeling, and remote sensing. 

Learn more

Paul Brierly

Yuma Center of Excellence for Desert Agriculture

Brierly uses a drone/LiDAR system to examine plant canopy geometry for crops, to assess growth and water needs, and improve agronomic planning and yield prediction in arid growing regions.

Learn more