Geomathics

Objectives

The Geomatics Laboratory of CERENA consists of a computer-lab for processing and modelling spatial/temporal information broadly related to natural resources and the environment subjects through geographic information systems, multivariate data analysis, geostatistics, digital image acquisition and processing software and remote sensing platforms, among other similar topics.

Organization

The diverse amount of data acquired in field work campaigns, with diverse equipment and techniques or the huge amount of remotely sensed imagery, require an integrated and efficient organization into network. This scheme permits a consistent interchange of data and a common analysis between the several researchers involved in the typical multidisciplinary nature of the research projects, contracts with industry or post-graduate thesis under development at CERENA.

Besides the intensive use of commercial software packages and modules for data processing and integration aiming at spatial analysis and modelling (for instance, ArcGIS, Statistica, Mathematica, Matlab, ENVI, eCognition) through multi-user licenses, the development of more generic software packages (multivariate data analysis and geostatistics) is a common practice. GeoMS covers the most common geostatistical methods and is used by all the groups of CERENA. Version 2.0 was recently launched. ANDAD is another software package developed by this laboratory that implements popular multivariate data analysis algorithms. Development of dedicated algorithms into friendly software routines to solve specific problems (like for instance, the automated detection of assorted patterns in planetary surfaces) is also a common practice of the people involved in this laboratory.

The use of own remote sensing platforms and sensors, like UAV-Unmanned Aerial Vehicles, for acquiring frequently remote imagery with very to ultra-high spatial resolutions (from centi to millimetric) is permitting monitoring less accessible regions with unprecedented detail, with the production of dedicated thematic maps and digital terrain models that could not be obtained with air and space-borne systems. Some of the current recent topics of interest for using these platforms are related to climate change and permafrost monitoring (for mapping ice-free surfaces in the Polar Regions, both in the Arctic and Antarctica or to natural hazards monitoring (identification and characterization of landslide areas in mountainous and inhabited areas like those of Madeira Island).

On- going Projects

Some of the typical projects currently under development at the Geomatics laboratory are listed below:

  • AULIS – Automated landslides inventory based on very high spatial resolution images
  • CAMEL – Characterization and classification of dune fields on Mars based on Earth analogues
  • CRYPTOSENSORS – Monitorization of the atmospheric pollution in the biosphere of Lisbon and South Margin of Tagus river using biosensors
  • DVINE – The Douro vineyards, World Heritage Patrimony: Assessing the impact of an ancient activity in the quality of sediment and water in the Douro
  • EARAM2 – Estudo de Avaliação do Risco de Aluviões na Ilha da Madeira – Fase 2
  • HISURF – Very high resolution imaging for detailed surface mapping in ice-free areas of Maritime Antarctica
  • LTER Montado – Long-term socio-ecological research and monitoring in a Mediterranean cultural landscape
  • Limiares de precipitação para o desencadeamento de deslizamentos na Ilha da Madeira
  • Uncertainty Assesment of Lithofacies Geometry
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