Research in Geospatial Science at the School covers the fields of Geographical Information Systems (GIS), Remote Sensing, and Photogrammetry. Research projects feature both theoretical and applied approaches.
Geographical Information Science (GIS) encompasses the technological and social knowledge and issues relating to spatial data and information. The research expertise in GIS at the School of Surveying covers most major themes in the discipline, including spatial analysis, collaborative GIS, web GIS, cartography, geovisualization, spatial modeling, spatial databases and data structures.
Earth observation from various aerial or spatial sensors is an effective means to monitor earth processes in remote regions.
Research about snow, glaciers and sea ice is conducted at the School of Surveying using remote sensing technologies. For example, MODIS and ASTER images are used in the Southern Alps of New Zealand to determine the hydrological supply to large hydro lakes and monitor glacier flow velocities, and ASAR and MODIS imagery are used to analyse sea ice conditions in McMurdo Sound, Antarctica.
The expertise at the School of Surveying in the mapping of land cover and habitat from very high resolution satellites (e.g., IKONOS, QuickBird) also supports various research projects in ecology and wildlife studies.
“Photogrammetry consists of making precise measurements from photographs and other imaging sources to determine the relative locations of points in space”. American Society for Photogrammetry and Remote Sensing (ASPRS).
Photogrammetry is traditionally used to create topographic maps from aerial and spatial imagery. Close range photogrammetry is also used at the School of Surveying to obtain accurate measurements of animals in wildlife research or to create virtual models of current and historical buildings.