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Remote Sensing & Geospatial Analysis Laboratory


Visiting Faculty

Prof. Hao Zhang  was a Visiting Associate Professor 2019-2020 from the Institute of Remote Sensing and Digital Earth (RADI), Chinese Academy of Sciences (CAS). Beijing, China

Prof. Akira Kato  was a Visiting Assistant Professor 2019, Landscape Science, Landscape Resource Science, Chiba University, Japan. He studies forest structure using computer graphics, LiDAR, UAS and TLS data.

Prof. Piotr Wezyk visited in 2017 from Department of Forest Ecology, University of Agriculture in Krakow, Kraków, Poland

Prof. Przemysław Tymków visited in 2015 Institute of Geodesy and Geoinformatics, Faculty of Environmental Engineering and Geodesy, Wroclaw University of Environmental and Life Sciences, Wroclaw, Poland.

Prof. Peter Krzystek visited PFC in 2016 from Faculty of Geoinformatics, Munich University of Applied Sciences, Munich, Germany

Prof. Luis Angel Ruiz visited in 2012 from Depto. Ingeniería Cartográfica, Geodesia y Fotogrametría, Universitat Politècnica de València, València, Spain

Post-Doctoral Fellows

Dr. Chad Babcock  was a postdoc with the PFC in RSGAL (2017-2018), although he spent his time between UW and Dr. Andrew Finley’s Geospatial Lab in the forestry department at Michigan State University. Chad continues his work on a NASA funded forest carbon research in Alaska and collaborates with RSGAL scientists.

Dr. Jeffery Richardson  (Postdoc 2011-2017; PhD 2011; MSc 2008) began his Post-doctoral appointment on Nov. 1, 2011, however, he was a PhD Student with Dr. Moskal from 2008 and defended his PhD in June 2011. He worked on Dr. Moskal’s two external funded projects: Collaborative Research: Northern Gulf of Mexico Hypoxia and Land Use in the Watershed: Feedback and Scale Interactions, funded through NSF; a collaboration with Dr. Sergey Robotyagov; and, Forest Health and Green Jobs: Natural Resources and Social Data, funded through the USDA Forest Service PNW Research Station, a collaboration with Dr. Kathleen Wolf and Dr. Dale Blahna.

Dr. Aaron Johnston (Postdoc 2013-2014) Aaron graduate from the UW-SEFS Wildlife Ecology program in 2013, he worked with RSGAL on developing lidar based habitat models. He is a Research Wildlife Biologist and a Mendenhall Postdoctoral Fellow at the USGS Northern Rocky Mountain Science Center in Bozeman, Montana.

Dr. Diane Styers (Postdoc 2010-2011) is an Associate Professor of Remote Sensing in the Department of Geosciences and Natural Resources at Western Carolina University, Cullowhee, NC.

Dr. Nick Vaughn (Postdoc 2012, PhD 2011) was a Smithsonian Post-Doctoral Fellow with the Forest Service at University of Hawaii at Hilo, currently at Global Ecology, Carnegie Institution for Science.

Dr. Van Kane (Postdoc 2010-2016) was a postdoc withing the Precision Forestry Cooperative and Dr. Jerry Franklin. Currently, leads the Forest Resilience Lab as Assistant Research Professor in Precision Forestry Cooperative, University of Washington.

Dr. Sooyoung Kim was a Postdoc with Dr. Moskal in 2009.


Dr. Meghan Halabisky (MS2010, PhD 2017) worked on grants related to spatiotemporal wetland assessments as well as a wetland project collaborations between RSGAL and the UW Climate Impacts Group. She played a critical role in developing many of the OBIA canopy cover algorithms including the LULC for Seattle, Olympia and Tacoma. After completing her PhD she became a Research Associate in RSGAL.

Dr. Hossain Vahidi  (PhD 2017) co-Advised EcoGIS Lab, Graduate School of Media and Governance, Keio University, Fujisawa, Kanagawa 252-0882, Japan

Dr. Michael Hannam  (PhD 2013) with Dr. S. Wyllie-Echeverria, he worked with Dr. Moskal on the application of terrestrial LiDAR to invasive species mapping. He held a postdoc with NOAA and later at the Smithsonian Environmental Research Center, he is an Ecologist with the National Park Service in Alaska.

Dr. Jeffery Richardson (MS2008, PhD 2011) Jeff worked on forest LAI for his MS thesis and more complex forest structure from aerial and terrestrial lidar for his PhD. He was heavily involved in many of the canopy cover mapping projects including Seattle, Olympia, Tacoma and Bainbridge. He was also the Teaching Assistant for Dr. Moskal’s ESRM 430 Remote Sensing of Environment.

Dr. Guang Zheng (PhD 2011) He joined RSGAL in 2007 from Nanjing University in China, he was advised by Dr. Moskal. Guang’s research, focused on deriving LAI from terrestrial LiDAR, was funded through Dr. Moskal’s CAFS NSF grant and the Corkery Family Chair Scholarship provided through the Precision Forestry Cooperative (PFC). Guang was the President of the UW Geospatial Club and the American Society for Photogrammetry and Remote Sensing (ASPRS) Puget Sound Student Chapter. He was also the Teaching Assistant for Dr. Moskal’s ESRM 430 Remote Sensing of Environment. Dr. Zheng has returned to Nanjing University in China to as a Professor in the International Institute for Earth System Science.

Dr. Akira Kato (PhD2008) was a PhD student co-advised by Dr. Moskal and Dr. Schiess, his research focused on capturing tree crown characteristics through surface reconstruction from LiDAR. His work has been funded by the Precision Forestry Cooperative, he has also TA’ed the ESRM250 GIS course. Akira was the founding president of the UW Geospatial Club and the American Society for Photogrammetry and Remote Sensing (ASPRS) Puget Sound Student Chapter, he has received numerous awards from ASPRS.  Currently Dr. Kato is a Professor at Chiba University, Japan.


Vivian Griffey (MS2019) was a MS student co-advised by Dr. V. Kane and Dr. L. M. Moskal. She worked on using airborne lidar and Landsat to analyze structural complexity and carbon storage in forests of western Oregon across multi-ownership landscapes. She was an intern with NASA during the summer of 2019 and is currently a scientist with the USGS Forest Service.

Yuiko Endo – (2019-2020) was a Visiting Master’s student  from civil engineering at Tohoku University, Japan. He focused on using radar data for environmental applications.

Caileigh Shoot  (MS 2018) was a MSc student (co-advised by Dr. Hans-Erik Andersen and Dr. Moskal) who studied classification of forest types across Tanana Valley of Alaska using hyperspectral and LiDAR data. Her previous work focused on verity of remote sneering tools including OBIA, SfM and drone captured multispectral imagery. After completing her internship with NASA during the summer of 2018 she accepted a position with Weyerhaeuser.

Travis Axe (MS 2018) was a dual MSc degree student in SEFS and Evans School of Public Policy and Governance (Dr. Craig Thomas). He was studying forestry characteristics using emerging remote sensing technologies including Structure from Motion . He was also working on a study looking at risk assessment and decision making in federal wildfire management (Dr. Alison Cullen). He is now working for Weyerhaeuser.

Jonnie Dunne (MS 2015) SEFS Fellowship recipient, worked on LiDAR and imagery fusion shoreline function assessment on Bainbrige Island, he also created the LULC and canopy cover map for Bainbridge. He was also the Teaching Assistant for Dr. Moskal’s ESRM 430 Remote Sensing of Environment. He works as a GIS consultant in Vermont.

Chris Vondrasek (MS 2013) studied wetland change as an undergraduate in RSGAL. Joined RSGAL a fewyearslater and completed his MS working with LiDAR data for hydrological assessments. He has worked  for the Skagit Watershed Council. Currently, he is completing independent research using SfM in the RSGAL lab.

Alexandra Kazakova (MS 2012) worked on Dr. Moskal’s funded project: Forest Health Rx: Geospatial Rapid Forest Health Assessment in Heterogeneous Forests, and extraction of forest parameters from aerial hyperspectral imagery, and aerial and terrestrial LiDAR. Her career has included positions at Weyerhaeuser and now at Microsoft.

Justin Kirsch (MS2011) He worked on below and above ground biomass assessments with LiDAR radar and optical remote sensing.

David Stephens (MS 2011)  He worked on Dr. Moskal’s funded project to develop LiDAR driven forest inventory protocols. David worked closely with Steve Reutebuch and Bob McGaughey from the USDA Forest Service. He works as a lidar analyst for the Joint Base Lewis–McChord (JBLM).

Laurel James (MS 2010) worked with Dr. Moskal on mountain goat habitat mapping.

Todd Erdody (MS2009) was an EPA STARS Fellow advised by Dr. Moskal. His first year of graduate work was funded through a CFR fellowship. Todd worked on “Fusion of LiDAR and Imagery for Estimating Canopy Fuel Metrics in Eastern Washington Forests”. In 2008 Todd received a travel award from the American Society for Photogrammetry and Remote Sensing. He has worked as a Fire Lead for Crater Lake National Park, Fire Ecologist at Bureau of Land Management – Nevada and now is now  working on forest fires with the USDA Forest Service in Bozman, Montana.

Alicia Sullivan (MS2008) worked with Dr. Schiess to develop a repeatable method for forest stand delineation with LiDAR. Alicia, completed her undergraduate work in the College of Forest Resources at the University of Washington, she has been involved in forest inventory GIS mapping  from aerial imagery. Alicia was also an active member of multiple student organizations, including The UW Geospatial Club and SAF. Her career has included positions at Weyerhaeuser, Microsoft and currently Google.

Teri (Hunsinger) Nelson (MS2006) was a graduate student of Dr. Moskal and the Graduate Teaching Assistant for Dr. Moskal’s Aerial Photography Interpretation) course. Teri successfully defended her thesis on April 21st, 2006. Teri worked as a Graduate Assistant on the Remote Sensing Database for Earth Science Education at MSU. Her MS thesis: Hunsinger, T. (MS 2006). Spatiotemporal patterns of transitional landscapes in the Southwest Ozarks. MS Thesis, Missouri State University. Post graduation she worked as the GIS Coordinator for the City of. Republic, Missouri and now for the Associated Electric Cooperative.

Nathan Huggins (MS2006) was advised by Dr. Moskal as a graduate student in the Geospatial Sciences Program. Nathan successfully defended his thesis on April 21st, 2006. Nathan has worked as a Graduate Assistant on the Forest Change Project for the James River Basin Partnership, and the ‘Visualizing the forest change in the James River Basin’. His MS thesis: Huggins, N. (MS 2006). Remote Sensing Classification Methods for Monitoring Eastern Red Cedar. MS Thesis, Missouri State University. He works for the City of Springfield as a GIS Analyst.

Jennifer Haack (MS2006) was advised by Dr. Moskal, she has successfully defended her thesis on April 21st, she has worked on the Wilson’s Creek National Battlefield – historical trees mapping project, her thesis work is closely tied to the Geostatistical analysis of bird & vegetation community data project in the Tallgrass Prairie National Preserve. Her MS thesis: Haack, J. (MS 2006). Geostatistical analysis of plant communities at Tallgrass Prairie National Preserve, KS. MS Thesis, Missouri State University. Currently, Jennifer is the GIS Specialist at the Prairie Cluster and Heartland Network.

Jon Woosley (2006) was a Graduate Student in the accelerated Masters program, advised by Dr. Moskal. He is also the Graduate Assistant for GRY360 and GRY 551. Jon has worked on the Geostatistical analysis of bird & vegetation community data project in the Tallgrass Prairie National Preserve. Presently Jon is studying the impact of Urban Growth in the Brush Creek Watershed on community conservation costs. His MS thesis: Woosley, R. J. (MS 2006) – Classification and prediction of impervious surfaces in the Brush Creek watershed, MO. MS Thesis, Missouri State University. Currently he runs his own surveying consulting company.

John Carey (2006) John was an investigator on the iCAVE – Ozarks Cave Geovisualization Pilot Project. The project aimed at using geovisualization methods, stereo imaging and feature extraction techniques to map various structures of Ozarks caves.

Russ Riss (MS 2006) helped to integrate the Geology Tour into the CNAS Centennial Project database and developed the 3D virtual reality models of the Missouri State University campus based on the 2004-05 aerial photos data set.


David E. Hirschowitz (2020) worked with Dr. Kane on analyzing digital photography and LiDAR data for applied forest resilience research.

Ian McNabb (2019) worked on stream mapping with the backpack lidar to characterize steam slope and riparian vegetation cover, he was a field assistant for the NASA funded Alaska shrub biomass mapping with TLS field crew (summer 2019) and he worked on a collaboration with the Stand Management Cooperative to map forest characteristics using drones.

Matt Shaw (2019) worked as a field assistant for the NASA funded Alaska shrub biomass mapping with TLS field crew (summer 2018) and processing lidar and remote sensed data for forest fire assessments.

Joe Sisnero (2019) worked on mapping forest inventory plots with the mobile lidar backpack to get stem maps and tree biometrics.

Erin Stran (2019) worked on her capstone on habitat mapping with sonar data for the endangered Higgins eye pearlymussel (Lampsilis higginsii) in the Wapsipinicon River in Iowa using side scan sonar and bathymetry data, she was co advised by Dr. Moskal and Dr. John Marzluff.

Mikaela Balkind (2019) worked on mapping pre- and post-fire NDVI using high-resolution multispectral imagery collected with UAS over the Mima Mounds Natural Area Preserve.

Gavin Forster (2018) completed a capstone in the on landslide mapping on Mt. Maker-Snoqualmie National Forest using aerial LiDAR data, he is now working for Weyerhaeuser.

Max Sugarman (2016) was an undegraduate student working on his capstone project in RSGAL monitoring wetlands.

Patrick Mi (2015) undergraduate student who worked on TSL and SfM mapping comparisons.

Riley Milinovich (2013) worked with Dr. Moskal on using terrestrial LiDAR and ground radar data in WA and OR for above and below ground carbon assessments.

Megan Davis (2010) Applications of terrestrial LiDAR in forest management.

Brendan Boyer was an undergraduate field assistant during the summer of 2009 for Jeff Richardson (RSGAL PhD Student) helping with collection of terrestrial LiDAR Starkey Experimental Forest in Union County, Oregon.

Ryan Leon (2009) Visiting undergraduate funded through the Morehouse College Fellowship in Engineering; he worked with RSGAL on biofuels feedstock and biomass estimation with terrestrial LiDAR

Chris Vondrasek (2009) Worked on historical image interpretation of arid wetlands.

A.J. Frye was an undergraduate student in the Department of Geography and an intern with RSGAL (2006-2008). He served as the Vice President of the UW Geospatial Club and the the American Society for Photogrammetry and Remote Sensing (ASPRS) Puget Sound Student Chapter. AJ has gone through the National Geospatial Intelligence Agency internship program and works for TerraMetric.

Philip Johnsey was an undergraduate student majoring in Environmental Science & Resource Management (ESRM) and minoring in Applied Mathematics.  He worked with Dr. Moskal on terrestrial LiDAR and estimation of urban forest aboveground biomass (2008).

Laurel James (2008) Completed her undergraduate capstone in RSGAL studying remote sensing of mountain goat habitat.

Tadd Wheeler (2008) worked on an internship with Dr. Moskal to developed rapid invasive species field mapping techniques. He is currently a graduate student at University of Idaho.

Stacey Armstrong (2004-2006) worked for RSGAL and assisted in the development of the CNAS Centennial Project and worked on the MoAIMS – Missouri Atlas of Impact and Meteorite Sites Project. She currently works for the Ozarks Environmental and Water Resources Institute at the University of Missouri.

Brandi Parsley (2004-2006) was a student in the Department of Biology at Missouri State University. Brandi worked with RSGAL to identify and collect geographic positions for all trees surveyed and worked on developing the virtual arboretum pages for the CNAS Centennial Project.

Shannon Lear (2003-2005) managed the MSU RSGAL Satellite data server for Earth’s systems science education & research. Shannon has completed a GeoDesign graduate degree at University of Redlands and is working for the National Inelegance Geospatial Agency.

Jim Guy (2006) worked for RSGAL on geovisualization of the Springfield Conservation Nature Center.

Bobby Touzinsky (2003 – 2004) worked for RSGAL on the CNAS Centennial Project, graduated in 2004 and is currently working as an Associate Geospatial Analyst for ORBIMAGE in St. Louis.

Visiting Students

Snehal More was a visiting PhD student (Summer 2018) from Virginia Tech (Adviser: Dr. Randolph Wynne). She is working with Dr. Moskal on utilizing Landsat and Sentinel data for mapping forest plantation in Southeast USA and India.

Ivan Barton  was a Visiting PhD Candidate (Summer 2018) from University of Sopron, funded through the Campus Mundi Programme working with Dr. Moskal on forest type classification with Sentinel 2 imagery.

Dr. Zhongya Zhang (PhD 2015) was a visiting student from School of Land Science and Technology, China University of Geosciences, Beijing. She worked with Dr. Moskal on hyperspectral and LiDAR data fusion for forest health assessment.

Akira Nemoto (MS 2014) was a visiting student form Chiba University, he used terrestrial laser scanning in restoration ecology.

Eva Bednarczyk (MS 2008) Visiting student from Jagiellonian University, Poland where she earned her MS in 2009. Eva worked with Dr. Moskal and RSGAL on remote sensing and dendrochronological techniques comparison in simulation of fire behavior in Teanaway river drainage in eastern Cascade Mountains of Washington, USA.

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