Earth Remote Sensing Center Overview
Earth Remote Sensing (ERS) is a critical research area with applications ranging from agriculture and hydrology (e.g., USDA), climate and atmospheric studies (e.g., NASA), archaeology (e.g., NASA), severe weather prediction (e.g., NOAA), war fighting (e.g., DoD), and disaster relief (e.g., FEMA and DoE). The Beaver Works ERS center develops payloads utilizing instrumentation across much of the electromagnetic spectrum for aircraft, UAV, or CubeSat platforms. The principal objective of remote sensing is to develop technology on an overhead platform that produces useful data. These resulting data products allow the user community access to their required geophysical parameters. For example, FEMA would be interested in the timely mapping of recent flooding to manage resources and relief aid. The ERS researchers have extensive experience developing these programs.
Undergraduate and graduate students will have opportunities to gain hands-on experience working on payloads and platforms throughout the various stages of the hardware development cycle. Remote sensing payloads typically use radio frequency or electro-optical technology, which require precise calibration. Designing and developing platforms can encompass the disciplines of attitude determination and control systems, propulsion, aerodynamics, thermal and structural analysis, avionics, and communication. Opportunities also exist for implementing the mission operations and developing algorithms that produce the required data products, this work requires a range of skills in the core sciences, signal processing, and algorithms.