NCEO Instrumentation and Radiative Basis

Lead Research Organisation: National Centre for Earth Observation

Abstract

The NCEO's Instrumentation and Radiative Basis work encompasses 1. Support to NCEO and wider NERC community via access to significant remote sensing instrumentation, facilities and measurement expertise, along with training and tools, flexibly deployable to support NERC science. 2. Development of underpinning knowledge on EO radiative transfer, that can provide the NERC community with significant steps forward in abilities to exploit EO data. 3. Access to relevant EO data and geophysical products in a near real-time manner for science studies, and to deliver services and abilities to obtain data and geophysical knowledge required on short timescales, for example for supporting science campaigns or study of rapidly changing events. Work coordinates and complements activities of the Field Spectroscopy Facility (FSF) and NERC Earth Observation Data and Acquisition and Analysis Service (NEODAAS).
 
Description We have coordinated the work of two NERC facilities related to Earth Observation - the NERC Field Spectroscopy Facility (FSF) and the NERC Earth Observation Data and Acquisition and Analysis Service - who's outputs and activities are separately reported (under fsf010001 and nceo020007 respectively).

We have also liaised frequently with a third NERC facility to which FSF contributes National Capability and which is used by NCEO staff - the Airborne Research and Survey Facility (ARSF) - and we sit on their steering committee.

We have led the continued development of a state of the art atmospheric radiative transfer model (the RFM) which is used widely across NCEO (useage mainly within nceo020005), and in the national and international EO community, and we have collected new spectral datasets for use in improving atmospheric retrievals of important trace compounds from remotely sensed spectra.

We have developed the capability to efficiently collect, process and interpret terrestrial laser scanner data of forested landscapes, and are placing the developed tools online for use by the community. Similarly the 3D information derived from these laser scans is being used to develop inputs into 3D terrestrial radiative transfer models, making the definition of vegetation structure in such models more realistic and more efficient. These 3D RT models have also been placed online with appropriate training materials, and this forms the start of the NCEO 'toolkits and training' repository.

We bid for and won the opportunity to develop and coordinate a NERC Advanced Training Short Course (ATSC) based on the facilities and capabilities described above, which was very successfully run in 2015 and has been bid again for and funded to be delivered in June 2017.

We have continued to develop a state of the art land data assimilation system (software) that we have made available to the community and which can take as input multiple types of remote sensing data. As part of this the technology for gaussian process emulation of complex models has been developed and pushed forward for use in emulation of radiative transfer models, significantly speeding up computations and allowing otherwise very difficult to manage calculations to be undertaken.

We have made developments in the real-time processing of atmospheric remote sensing data to retrieve key trace gas species (e.g. ozone) and the use of this within the Copernicus Atmosphere Service has been trialed. This activity complements the more oceanic, cloud and terrestrial focus of the near real-time NEODAAS processing.

We have procured and acquired a series of new hardware resources to be deployed to support NERC National Capability science within NCEO, and in time certain of these will also be made available to the wider community.

We have made measurements of new stratospheric ozone depleting substances, and better spectroscopy of already monitored substances, such that changes in the atmospheric concentration of these compounds (not all of which are banned under the Montreal Protocol) can be better monitored.

We have also made new measurements of the carbon captured and stored in urban trees, finding that per unit area this can be almost as much as in the trees of tropical forests, and have developed new allomertric equations for use in such forests that may replace the current ones commonly deployed in most studies of forest carbon and which will therefore potentially have widespread use and impact.

Finally we have developed a method for delivering fire emissions estimates from satellite measures of fire radiative power, bypassing the series of assumptions that are used in approaches deployed currently and enabling the development of fully independent fire emissions inventories.
Exploitation Route Much of the national capability inherent in this work is designed to be used by the wider NCEO community, and also the wider NERC community of EO scientists and users of EO information. This occurrs both through our facilities (FSF and NEODAAS) but also via the NCEO web portal itself.

We believe many of the new tools and techniques developed in this programme will be taken up by others, including the methods to deliver independent fire emissions estimates for improving atmospheric composition forecasting, the new spectroscopy and observations enabling ozone depleting substances to be better monitored though satellite EO, and the increased used of LiDAR for forest measurement and carbon assesssment.
Sectors Aerospace, Defence and Marine,Agriculture, Food and Drink,Digital/Communication/Information Technologies (including Software),Education,Environment

 
Description The facilities offered by FSF in particular are occasionally used by non-academic groups wanting to make use of detailed field or laboratory spectroscopic methods. Similarly the new and improved infrared absorption cross sections for trichlorofluoromethane (CFC-11) are a significant advance on the data currently available and will provide the foundations for monitoing the slow removal of this previously a widely used refrigerant (used throughout much of the twentieth century) that is a very potent (stratospheric) ozone-depleting substance (ODS), iow banned under the Montreal Protocol. The high-quality laboratory spectroscopic data provided by this Project will underpin this capability. CEDA are supporting Defra on their exploration and deployment of Analysis-Ready [EO] Data NCEO's Mat Disney's work was part of a major new exhibition 'The Future Starts Here' at the V&A Museum. The exhibition showcased Disney's 3D LiDAR work alongside a range of new objects and technology that can potentially shape our future. It is a radical departure for the V and A, looking forward rather than back, and is the first big show produced by the gallery's design, architecture and digital department. The results from this project have also indicated that pockets of urban forest can contain as much carbon as tropical rainforests, according to new research based on use of remote sensing LiDAR. Protecting and planting urban forests is central to building liveable and sustainable cities in a future where global populations are set to become increasingly urbanised. This research sheds new light on the value of urban trees for their potential to store carbon and mitigate climate change. The new study, published in Carbon Balance and Management, used publicly-available airborne LiDAR (Light Detection and Ranging) data collected by the UK Environment Agency, combined with ground-based LiDAR measurements, to generate a map of carbon stored in an estimated 85,000 trees across the London Borough of Camden.
First Year Of Impact 2018
Sector Aerospace, Defence and Marine,Education,Environment,Culture, Heritage, Museums and Collections
Impact Types Cultural,Societal

 
Description Better measurement of forests for eg REDD+ reporting
Geographic Reach Multiple continents/international 
Policy Influence Type Citation in other policy documents
URL http://www.gofcgold.wur.nl/redd/
 
Description Improved valuation of urban trees in urban environment planning and policy
Geographic Reach Local/Municipal/Regional 
Policy Influence Type Influenced training of practitioners or researchers
Impact Influence on leading practitioners. Kireon Doick, Head of the Urban Forest Research Group, Forest Research said of this work "Urban trees are a very important resource for all those who live in, visit or work in towns and cities, for they provide us with a plethora of health and well-being benefits, and they keep these places cleaner and more attractive. Canopy cover values released last year show that for some areas the abundance of trees is also higher than in the countryside (averaging: 16% (towns) and 10% (pan-England in 2016)).  This means we should expect our urban trees to also be providing us will an important carbon sink, helping to combat the global trend of increasing carbon dioxide in the atmosphere. This new work by UCL is a welcome development in advancing this understanding, and I look forward to hearing how the work continues to develop." Councillor Adam Harrison, Cabinet Member for Improving Camden's Environment said of the work: "Camden is really pleased to partner with UCL, based in the borough, in order to unlock the benefits of trees not just for our own residents but for people's benefit round the world."
 
Description Influence on urban forest planning and management leaders and professionals: Sir Harry Studholme, Chair of the Forestry Commission said of this work: "The trees in our cities are important. They matter because they are close to people and are a key component of our urban environment providing beauty, shade and homes for myriad species as well as absorbing carbon and pollutants. The work being carried out at UCL is adding colour and detail to this understanding"
Geographic Reach National 
Policy Influence Type Implementation circular/rapid advice/letter to e.g. Ministry of Health
 
Description Advanced Training Short Course
Amount £57,282 (GBP)
Funding ID Field Spectroscopy, Airborne Optical Imaging and Process Modelling for Environmental Science 
Organisation Natural Environment Research Council 
Sector Public
Country United Kingdom
Start 04/2015 
End 09/2015
 
Description Copernicus Climate Change Service C3S_312a Lot 5
Amount € 29,242 (EUR)
Organisation European Union 
Sector Public
Country European Union (EU)
Start 10/2017 
End 09/2018
 
Description Discovery science
Amount £750,000 (GBP)
Funding ID NE/P011780/1 
Organisation Natural Environment Research Council 
Sector Public
Country United Kingdom
Start 10/2017 
End 09/2020
 
Description EU Horizon 20:20
Amount € 1,900,000 (EUR)
Funding ID 757526 
Organisation European Commission 
Department Horizon 2020
Sector Public
Country European Union (EU)
Start 01/2018 
End 12/2021
 
Description EU Horizon 20:20: BACI
Amount € 246,000 (EUR)
Organisation European Commission 
Sector Public
Country European Union (EU)
Start 04/2015 
End 02/2019
 
Description Earth Observation Data Integration Pilot, Research Project 9 - Innovative application of remote sensing to Forestry management and monitoring
Amount £15,000 (GBP)
Organisation Department For Environment, Food And Rural Affairs (DEFRA) 
Sector Public
Country United Kingdom
Start 03/2016 
End 10/2016
 
Description Grants for Exploratory Ideas
Amount £10,000 (GBP)
Organisation UK Space Agency 
Department Centre for Earth Observation Instrumentation
Sector Academic/University
Country United Kingdom
Start 06/2016 
End 09/2016
 
Description Industrial Strategy Challenge Fund (ISCF) Agri-tech Seeding Catalyst Award
Amount £10,000 (GBP)
Organisation Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council (BBSRC) 
Sector Public
Country United Kingdom
Start 12/2018 
End 02/2019
 
Description NASA ROSES 2017 NNH17ZDA001N-LCLUC
Amount $900,000 (USD)
Organisation National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) 
Sector Public
Country United States
Start 01/2018 
End 12/2020
 
Description NASA ROSES CMS
Amount $200,000 (USD)
Organisation National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) 
Sector Public
Country United States
Start 06/2016 
End 05/2019
 
Description NCEO Terrestrial Carbon and Vegetation
Amount £28,882 (GBP)
Organisation National Centre for Earth Observation 
Sector Academic/University
Country United Kingdom
Start 07/2017 
End 03/2018
 
Description NCEO capital funding award
Amount £25,000 (GBP)
Organisation National Centre for Earth Observation 
Sector Academic/University
Country United Kingdom
Start 06/2017 
End 09/2017
 
Description NCEO studentship
Amount £85,000 (GBP)
Organisation National Centre for Earth Observation 
Sector Academic/University
Country United Kingdom
Start 09/2015 
End 03/2019
 
Description NERC Capital Equipment bid
Amount £118,000 (GBP)
Organisation Natural Environment Research Council 
Sector Public
Country United Kingdom
Start 01/2014 
End 03/2014
 
Description NERC laser scanning
Amount £630,000 (GBP)
Funding ID NE/N00373X/1 
Organisation Natural Environment Research Council 
Sector Public
Country United Kingdom
Start 11/2015 
End 10/2018
 
Description STFC-NSFC "Sentinels of Wheat"
Amount £556,000 (GBP)
Organisation Science and Technologies Facilities Council (STFC) 
Sector Academic/University
Country United Kingdom
Start 11/2018 
End 06/2019
 
Description STFC/NEWTON Agritech - China Pathfinder project
Amount £21,284 (GBP)
Organisation Science and Technologies Facilities Council (STFC) 
Sector Academic/University
Country United Kingdom
Start 04/2014 
End 03/2015
 
Description STFC/NEWTON Agritech Project - China
Amount £58,000 (GBP)
Organisation Science and Technologies Facilities Council (STFC) 
Sector Academic/University
Country United Kingdom
Start 07/2015 
End 03/2016
 
Description Satellites to improve Agri-food systems - FS
Amount £198,473 (GBP)
Organisation Innovate UK 
Sector Public
Country United Kingdom
Start 07/2016 
End 08/2017
 
Description UK Analysis-Ready Data Tests in Support of CEOS Standards
Amount £12,330 (GBP)
Organisation UK Space Agency 
Sector Public
Country United Kingdom
Start 03/2019 
End 05/2019
 
Title Librat Jupyter training 
Description A series of Jupyter notebooks were developed and published that introduce new users to librat, including installation, creating a scene and running passive and active simulations. 
Type Of Material Improvements to research infrastructure 
Year Produced 2016 
Provided To Others? Yes  
Impact A workshop was conducted with international researchers 
URL https://github.com/philwilkes/librat_in_jupyter
 
Title NCEO instrumentation 
Description NCEO procured a series of EO hardware to support their National Capability EO activities. Most were either lab or field instruments that are focused on the precise measurement of spectra and/or single or multi-wavelength imagery. 
Type Of Material Improvements to research infrastructure 
Provided To Others? No  
Impact The ability for NCEO to support new EO development with laboratory and field-based remotely sensed measures has been greatly enhanced. We are currently finalising the new capabilities and once done the roll-out of some of these new capabilities to the wider community will begin. 
 
Title New collection & dissemination of RT modelling tools and resources 
Description Collection of radiative transfer modelling tools and resources for NCEO, and wider, research community 
Type Of Material Improvements to research infrastructure 
Year Produced 2017 
Provided To Others? Yes  
Impact Many requests for information on tools, and training possibilities, as well as new research collaborations. 
URL https://www.nceo.ac.uk/data-tools/land-tools/
 
Title Treeseg 
Description New code to extract 3D trees from lidar point clouds collected in forest environments. 
Type Of Material Improvements to research infrastructure 
Year Produced 2017 
Provided To Others? Yes  
Impact Code and algorithms developed as part of Andy Burt's PhD and our ongoing lidar work. Many requests for the code, so we have now made it available with examples and tests. Being downloaded quite frequently, leading to more potential collaboration opportunities. 
URL https://github.com/apburt/treeseg
 
Title librat modelling tool and webpages 
Description Development of 3D radiative transfer tool (librat) we have used extensively, and provided for other researchers as an open source (unsupported) tool. The tool has been the basis for a number of collaborations, as well as various ESA- and EU-funded projects. Recent developments include new additions to the code for lidar simulation and web pages to provide online support for the tool. 
Type Of Material Improvements to research infrastructure 
Provided To Others? Yes  
Impact Forms core of ESA 3D VegLab toolbox (https://github.com/netceteragroup/esa-beam/tree/master/beam-3dveglab-vlab); forms core tool for online radiative transfer model intercomparison tool (JRC's RAMI ROMC tool: http://romc.jrc.ec.europa.eu/Home.php). 
URL https://librat.wikispaces.com/
 
Title 3D lidar tree point clouds and models 
Description A collection of 3D trees as used in the p 
Type Of Material Database/Collection of data 
Year Produced 2018 
Provided To Others? Yes  
Impact None as yet. 
 
Title Absorption cross-section datasets 
Description Specifically associated with the NCEO are absorption cross-section datasets for CFC-12, HCFC-22, CCl4. These improve upon current data in HTIRAN/GEISA and enable improved retrievals of these species from remote-sensing observations. 
Type Of Material Database/Collection of data 
Year Produced 2014 
Provided To Others? Yes  
Impact The CFC-12 dataset has been published, with the HCFC-22 and CCl4 papers currently under review. A new ACE-FTS CCl4 retrieval has been developed; this greatly improves upon that previously available. Carbon tetrachloride (CCl4) is an ozone-depleting substance and currently regulated by the Montreal Protocol. There is an inconsistency between observations of CCl4 abundance and estimated sources and sinks, i.e. CCl4 atmospheric concentrations are declining more slowly than expected. This work will be included in a SPARC report on the "mystery" of CCl4, which is currently in preparation; this will be forwarded to the Vienna Convention Ozone Research Managers. 
 
Description ACE-FTS 
Organisation University of Waterloo
Country Canada 
Sector Academic/University 
PI Contribution I provide spectroscopic datasets for the retrievals, analyse the retrieved data and write up results for publication.
Collaborator Contribution They provide the satellite data and retrieval expertise.
Impact There have been a number of publications arising from this work. Since October 2014, these include papers on hydrogen fluoride, carbon tetrachloride, acetone, and the growth in stratospheric chlorine from short-lived chemicals not controlled by the Montreal Protocol.
Start Year 2008
 
Description Application of EO-LDAS to UK agriculture 
Organisation ADAS
Country United Kingdom 
Sector Private 
PI Contribution There is an interest by scientists in ADAS to use heterogeneous optical satellite observations to infer continuous time series of land surface parameters that might be of interest to agronomists (e.g. leaf area index, canopy chlorophyll content....). We will be looking the EO-LDAS tool for this over a small number of test sites in the UK.
Collaborator Contribution ADAS will be assessing whether the data we produce interpreting the Earth Observation data is of use to build a business case.
Impact This collaboration is still at a very early stage. A funding proposal has been submitted to the Innovate UK "Satellites for Agrifood" call.
Start Year 2016
 
Description CNRS 
Organisation National Center for Scientific Research (Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique CNRS)
Country France 
Sector Public 
PI Contribution To visit and deploy our terrestrial laser scanner at the CNRS field site at Nouragues, French Guiana, as part of CNRS-funded ongoing work.
Collaborator Contribution Provide funding for travel, subsistence, logistical help and accommodation, permits etc.
Impact 3D laser data for French Guiana plot, to be shared with partners and wider collaborators. Multi-disciplinary: remote sensing, engineering, ecology, forestry, climate.
Start Year 2015
 
Description Chinese Academy of Forestry 
Organisation Chinese Academy of Forestry
Country China 
Sector Academic/University 
PI Contribution Swansea University and UK Forest Research jointly received funding under the Newton Agri-tech programme to facilitate collaborative research with Chinese Academy of Forestry, focussed on improved remote sensing of forests in line with UK ODA guidelines. During the course of the Newton Agri-tech Pathfinder project and as part of a Year 1 Newton project, the team has built a strong and close collaboration. This has involved four UK/China international visits and extended fieldwork by senior and postdoctoral researchers from both countries. UK members additionally hosted two MSc students from the Chinese Academy of Forestry in early 2016. The objectives specifically aim to support the economic development of the key forest agricultural sector in China, a sector that has been assigned high priority by the Chinese government and allocated great investment, but which has suffered high mortality and sub-optimal yield, affecting the economic security of already-vulnerable communities.
Collaborator Contribution Members of Chinese Academy of Forestry facilitated a series of consultations with relevant officials, resource managers and National Park/Natural Reserve Directors in Beijing, and Yunnan Province (Kunming and Pu'er) during Spring 2015, to assess the issues facing China's agricultural resource and to determine the needs of end-users from both operational and managerial perspectives. Further collaborative research included sharing of data from new lidar sensor LiChy, and field site visits to experimental plots in Yunnan forest areas, and contribution to jointly authored publications (in progress).
Impact The participation of the Chinese Academy of Forestry and consultation by the proposal partners with Forest Farm, National Park and Natural Reserve Directors, and government officials responsible for policy and management, gave a direct route for the collaboration to support the economic and welfare needs of end-users and associated communities. Results of field and satellite studies were shared and joint strategy for best practice in collaboration established. Software for design of future satellite missions relevant to forest monitoring was supplied by Swansea University, and training given to members of CAF. A journal publication on the project is in preparation.
Start Year 2014
 
Description Collaboration on radiative transfer/data assimilation with the ESA FLEX team 
Organisation University of Valencia
Country Spain 
Sector Academic/University 
PI Contribution I have been in discussions with the FLEX team to use our work on emulation of RT models to speed up their scene simulator, a major part of the effort to assess the capabilities of the instrument.
Collaborator Contribution The FLEX team are investigating methods to correct for atmospheric effects in the retrieved signal. This requires running costly radiative transfer models, which makes the whole endeavour impractical. We are currently investigating extending the use of emulators to other areas of the FLEX processing flow.
Impact We have produced two papers in collaboration with the Valencia group (one accepted, another one in press).
Start Year 2015
 
Description Collaboration with EOLDAS 
Organisation University College London
Country United Kingdom 
Sector Academic/University 
PI Contribution We are providing new EO data products at high resolution over the UK, including agriculture and land use data.
Collaborator Contribution The European Space Agency EOLDAS (Earth Observation Land Data Assimilation System) team are providing expertise and tools to transform our satellite data into new, consistent EO products over the UK, which can be used by the GREENHOUSE modelling team.
Impact A new estimate of surface reflectance over the uk from multiple satellite sources. Conference papers reporting first results of this.
Start Year 2013
 
Description ESA BIOMASS 
Organisation European Space Agency
Country France 
Sector Public 
PI Contribution To visit calibration/validation sites for ESA BIOMASS mission.
Collaborator Contribution Provide funds for travel to, and scanning of ESA BIOMASS cal/val sites.
Impact Field visit to Ghana to scan AfriSCAT calibration site (TBC 2016). Multi-disciplinary: remote sensing, engineering, ecology, forestry, climate.
Start Year 2015
 
Description Kew 
Organisation Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew
Country United Kingdom 
Sector Charity/Non Profit 
PI Contribution To visit Kew and scan 'Icon' trees to provide baseline 3D information for monitoring stability of old trees.
Collaborator Contribution To facilitate access to the gardens and additional resources for scanning.
Impact 3D models of trees at Kew. Multi-disciplinary: remote sensing, engineering, ecology, forestry, climate.
Start Year 2015
 
Description MOAP Radiation 
Organisation Meteorological Office UK
Country United Kingdom 
Sector Public 
PI Contribution Provide the RFM software for use in simulating satellite radiances.
Collaborator Contribution Provide set of profiles required for simulating satellite radiances. Organising UK workshop on radiative transfer.
Impact UK workshop on radiative transfer, May 2015.
Start Year 2014
 
Description Metrological reference spectroscopy for atmospheric remote sensing 
Organisation Physikalisch-Technische Bundesanstalt
Country Germany 
Sector Public 
PI Contribution My spectroscopic expertise and knowledge of the spectroscopic requirements for remote sensing
Collaborator Contribution Metrological expertise, sample gases, laboratory equipment and facilities, assistance of staff
Impact So far the collaboration has resulted in the measurement of room temperature CO2/air spectra at many different pressures.
Start Year 2017
 
Description NASA Albedo 
Organisation University of Massachusetts Boston
PI Contribution Invited team member to new NASA-funded initiative to combine EO data from various ESA Sentinel and NASA Landsat missions for improved albedo products in climate-sensitive circumpolar regions.
Collaborator Contribution Developing global albedo products from MODIS, NPP and other sensors, which are the de facto standard for satellite albedo. Bringing these methods to bear on a new combined NASA and ESA product.
Impact None as yet, will be a harmonised state-of-the art high resolution albedo product from combined ESA and NASA data.
Start Year 2017
 
Description NASA GEDI 
Organisation National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA)
Country United States 
Sector Public 
PI Contribution Calibration & validation work with the NASA GEDI team.
Collaborator Contribution Providing funding for fieldwork in US and Gabon.
Impact Generation of datasets and modelling tools for NASA GEDI team, and wider community of biomass research. Collaboration is multi-disciplinary as has science focus, but for policy delivery (via feeding into REDD+ MRV schemes).
Start Year 2017
 
Description Queensland Government 
Organisation Queensland Government
Country Australia 
Sector Public 
PI Contribution Collaboration to collect terrestrial laser scanner measurements of 3D forest structure at multiple locations, including Australia. Provided expertise and field partnerships.
Collaborator Contribution Provided expertise and field partnerships, access to data via the TERN data portal.
Impact Multiple publications, additional access to field data and new collaboration opportunities, including (for example) with the University of Queensland.
Start Year 2013
 
Description RCN 
Organisation Boston University
Department Department of Earth and Environment
Country United States 
Sector Academic/University 
PI Contribution Provide background, expertise on laser scanning to NSF-funded Research Coordination Network.
Collaborator Contribution Facilitating research coordination network.
Impact Meeting reports and minutes of RCN discussions; workshop.
Start Year 2015
 
Description Urban environments 
Organisation Learning through Landscapes, Winchester
Country United Kingdom 
Sector Charity/Non Profit 
PI Contribution Bringing methods we have developed to measure trees to urban landscapes, to provide independent estimates of value of trees in urban landscapes, for organisations who work in the education and environment sector, particularly underserved communities.
Collaborator Contribution Access to contacts with schools and organisations involved in tree planting and urban green space more generally, as well as data on tree planting from community planting activities.
Impact Joint CASE phd proposed through the London NERC DTP with LTL; data sharing with TFC for evaluation of urban tree cover.
Start Year 2018
 
Title A practical variational data assimilation framework for land surface parameters from satellite observations 
Description This software implements a sophisticated inversion procedure to interpret land surface parameters from Earth Observation (EO) data. The library is flexible in taking data from different sensors and applying state of the art physical models to interpret the observations in addition to other prior knowledge (be it land surface parameter distributions, or simple models of temporal or spatial trajectory of the parameters). The inferences are fully qualified by an uncertainty estimate. 
Type Of Technology Software 
Year Produced 2015 
Open Source License? Yes  
Impact The eoldas_ng tool has been fundamental in securing both European Space Agency and H2020 funding. We are now starting to demonstrate the potential use of the data we retrieve with this tool with commercial partners. 
URL http://jgomezdans.github.com/eoldas_ng
 
Title Flight radiative transfer model 
Description A radiative transfer model for simulation of remote sensing scenes and/or spectra of the land surface 
Type Of Technology Software 
Year Produced 2015 
Impact Available for the community to use 
 
Title Gaussian Process emulators for radiative transfer models 
Description This is a Python library that can be used to produce fast surrogate models (approximations) to complex and computationally expensive radiative transfer (RT) codes. The library is designed to be able to use in practical applications in land or atmospheric remote sensing, where e.g. satellite observations need to be interpreted with RT models to infer land surface or atmospheric properties. 
Type Of Technology Software 
Year Produced 2015 
Impact This library has already been used in a paper (Gomez-Dans et al, 2016), and on others which are currently being written. This software forms the foundations of a complex processing scheme to retrieve land surface properties from the Sentinel family of satellites funded under the H2020 scheme. 
URL http://jgomezdans.github.io/gp_emulator
 
Title MORSE (Multispectral Optimal Retrievals using Sequential Estimation) 
Description Software for the retrieval of profiles of atmospheric temperature and composition from MIPAS infrared spectra Recent developments have incorporated improved spectroscopic data and identifying new species for retrievals from MIPAS, as well as an ongoing conversion from Fortran77 to Fortran90 code. 
Type Of Technology Software 
Year Produced 2015 
Impact MORSE retrievals of MIPAS data are used in the Ozone CCI intercomparison and validation of ESA MIPAS products. Adapted versions of MORSE have been used to simulate aircraft observations and for the end-to-end simulator of the PREMIER candidate mission for ESA Earth Explorer programme. 
URL http://www.atm.ox.ac.uk/MORSE/
 
Title RFM v4.35 
Description Updated version of the Reference Forward Model software. The RFM is a multipurpose line-by-line radiative transfer model. 
Type Of Technology Software 
Year Produced 2016 
Impact The RFM is a widely used tool for atmospheric radiative transfer applications such as modelling infrared transmittance, simulating satellite measurements and validating parametrized radiative transfer models. 
URL http://eodg.atm.ox.ac.uk/RFM/
 
Title RFM v4.36 
Description Update of RFM FORTRAN77 software with various bug-fixes. 
Type Of Technology Software 
Year Produced 2017 
Impact Just bug fixes and some internal revisions which should be transparent to the user. 
URL http://eodg.atm.ox.ac.uk/RFM/rfm_updates.html
 
Title RFM v5.0 
Description v5 is recoded in FORTRAN90 and compatible with HITRAN 2016 
Type Of Technology Software 
Year Produced 2018 
Impact The use of FORTRAN90 avoids the need to recompile the RFM each time an array bound is exceeded. It allows use of the new molecules recognised in HITRAN 2016 as well as an arbitrary (as opposed to pre-defined) set of molecules represented by cross-section data. 
URL http://eodg.atm.ox.ac.uk/RFM/rfm_v5.0.html
 
Title RFM v5.01 
Description New version of the Reference Forward Model line-by-line radiative transfer model, adding some new functionality and bug-fixes to previous version. 
Type Of Technology Software 
Year Produced 2018 
Impact The software has been distributed to various users around the world for use in a variety of applications. The new version fixes some bugs identified by these users as well maintaining compatibility with the latest spectroscopic data. Also associated with this is an overhaul of the RFM web-site and an update of some (free to download) auxiliary software concerned with conversion from the new GEISA database to HITRAN format, which is of more general use and not confined to RFM users. 
URL http://eodg.atm.ox.ac.uk/RFM/
 
Title RFM v5.02 
Description New version of the Reference Forward Model line-by-line radiative transfer model, adding some new functionality and bug-fixes to previous version. Also updates of web-pages describing the use of the software, and updates to associated software tools associated with manipulating input datasets. 
Type Of Technology Software 
Year Produced 2019 
Impact Over the past 6 months copies of the RFM have been requested by 5 separate users based in the US, 5 in China, 1 in Spain and 5 in the UK. Applications range from modelling atmospheric radiation, exoplanets, satellite tracking and modelling limb radiances. This excludes any users who have downloaded the RFM source code directly from the NCEO web-site. 
URL http://eodg.atm.ox.ac.uk/RFM/
 
Title Reference Forward Model (RFM) 
Description The RFM is a GENLN2-based line-by-line radiative transfer model originally developed at AOPP, Oxford University, under an ESA contract to provide reference spectral calculations for the MIPAS instrument launched on the ENVISAT satellite in 2002. It has subsequently developed into a general purpose code suitable for a variety of different spectroscopic calculations. RFM maintenance and development is currently supported by the UK National Centre for Earth Observation (NCEO). The main design features are Easy to use - probably its main advantage Robustness - you shouldn't be able to crash the program Portability - written in (almost) standard FORTRAN-77 Efficient coding - attempts to maximise speed while minimising memory Self-documented code - just in case you need to make you own modifications On-line documentation - these web pages Output spectra independent of spectral range (eg value at 901.3 cm-1 will be the same whether you produce a spectrum from 901.2-901.4 cm-1 or from 500-1000 cm-1) RFM versions v4.33 and v4.34 were released during 2015. Details on each update can be found at http://www.atm.ox.ac.uk/RFM/rfm_updates.html 
Type Of Technology Software 
Year Produced 2015 
Open Source License? Yes  
Impact The RFM has been requested by, and distributed to, a number of groups within the UK and overseas and used for a variety of purposes including modelling lab spectra, satellite radiances, atmospheric absorption of extraterrestrial infrared radiation, modelling exoplanet atmospheres. 
URL http://www.atm.ox.ac.uk/RFM/
 
Description Advanced Training Short Course 
Form Of Engagement Activity Participation in an activity, workshop or similar
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach National
Primary Audience Professional Practitioners
Results and Impact A training course run for postgraduate students and researchers covering field spectroscopy and its link to airborne imaging and modelling of the land surface
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2015
 
Description Amazon FACE exhibition, Washington DC 
Form Of Engagement Activity Participation in an activity, workshop or similar
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Supporters
Results and Impact Invited and funded to participate in an exhibition of our work done as part of the multi-million dollar Amazon FACE CO2 experiment in the Amazon rainforest, near Manaus in Brazil. The exhibition took place in the Inter American Development Bank HQ, Washington DC, June 2017. The exhibition was intended to showcase progress in the FACE project, and potentially secure further funding for continued research at the Amazon FACE experiment.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2017
URL http://amazonface.org/news/5935e65df655c4d0226c643c
 
Description BBC documentary 
Form Of Engagement Activity A broadcast e.g. TV/radio/film/podcast (other than news/press)
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach National
Primary Audience Public/other audiences
Results and Impact Participated in BBC4 documentary: Oak Tree: Nature's Greatest Survivor, broadcast 1/10/2015.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=D3O9tFgqo-s
and
http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b06fq03t
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2015
URL http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b06fq03t
 
Description BBC documentary: Judi Dench: My Passion for Trees 
Form Of Engagement Activity A broadcast e.g. TV/radio/film/podcast (other than news/press)
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Media (as a channel to the public)
Results and Impact Invited to participate in a flagship documentary exploring the trees in Dame Judi Dench's garden, as part of an exploration of her love of trees. Scanned an oak tree in her garden, and then presented the results to her during various interviews and pieces to camera. Featured in premiere screening at Kew introduced by the director of Kew Gardens, and then featured in many places in the national press. Broadcast at Xmas prime time (BBC1 20/12/2017) reaching an audience over 4 million people. Tree data featured in BBC Arts Facebook page, viewed by > 45k people as of Feb 2018: https://www.facebook.com/BBCArtsOnline/videos/2403675943190879/
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2017
URL http://disneytls.blogspot.co.uk/2017/10/bbc-docs-featuring-our-work.html
 
Description BBC documentary: Life and Death on Your Lawn 
Form Of Engagement Activity A broadcast e.g. TV/radio/film/podcast (other than news/press)
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Media (as a channel to the public)
Results and Impact Use of the terrestrial laser scanning to illustrate the structure of trees and estimate the leaf area of trees in a suburban garden. Part of a 90 minute BBC 2 documentry, presented by Chris Packham, on the hidden biodiversity of suburban gardens. Seen by > 1m people and featured in the national press.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2017
URL http://disneytls.blogspot.co.uk/2017/10/bbc-docs-featuring-our-work.html
 
Description CEOS biomass protocol 
Form Of Engagement Activity A formal working group, expert panel or dialogue
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Professional Practitioners
Results and Impact Invited to co-lead the CEOS Working Group on Calibration and Validation (WGCV) for above ground biomass. The CEOS WGCV groups develop consensus protocols on international standards for earth observation products. My work on lidar measurement of biomass, particularly in tropical forests, has led to this invitation. The role involves leading the development of a protocol to allow new satellite observations of biomass to be calibrated and validated in such a way that they are as widely-used as possible by researchers and policy-makers alike.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2017
URL https://lpvs.gsfc.nasa.gov/Biomass/AGB_home.html
 
Description ESA Earth Observation Summer School 2016 
Form Of Engagement Activity Participation in an activity, workshop or similar
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Professional Practitioners
Results and Impact I was invited to give a lecture in the multi-sensor biophysical parameter retrieval using physical models, as well as to lead a practical session on the topic. The lecture and practical were based on the work that I have been carrying out on the EO-LDAS data assimilation system.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2016
URL https://earth.esa.int/web/eo-summer-school/home
 
Description ESA MOOC 
Form Of Engagement Activity A broadcast e.g. TV/radio/film/podcast (other than news/press)
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Public/other audiences
Results and Impact Lead educator and presented in ESA-funded Massive Open Online Course (MOOC) on Monitoring Climate From Space, 8000+ registrants.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2015,2016
URL https://www.futurelearn.com/courses/climate-from-space
 
Description ESA MOOC2 
Form Of Engagement Activity A broadcast e.g. TV/radio/film/podcast (other than news/press)
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Public/other audiences
Results and Impact A second ESA-funded MOOC (Massive Open Online Course): Optical Remote Sensing. The success of the first one (Climate from Space) led ESA to fund a second, on which I am one of two lead educators (along with Prof. Martin Wooster). I have been involved in the development of the MOOC from the outset, including suggestions for topics, case studies, direction etc.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2016
 
Description Field spectroscopy summer school 
Form Of Engagement Activity A formal working group, expert panel or dialogue
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach National
Primary Audience Postgraduate students
Results and Impact Helped in a NERC ATSC Field Spectroscopy workshop organised by Dr Alasdair Mac Arthur. The workshop was attended by 12 PhD students who were trained in making field measurements, airborne data processing and radiative transfer modelling.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2017
 
Description GEO BON Ecosystem Function Group 
Form Of Engagement Activity A formal working group, expert panel or dialogue
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Professional Practitioners
Results and Impact Invited to sit on GEO BON Ecosystem Function Working Group. The aim of the Working groups (WGs) centred on Essential Biodiversity Variables (EBVs) are expected to deliver on four fronts over the coming three years: (1) identify research opportunities (relevant to ecosystem functions) supporting the identification/implementation of EBVs; (2) derive/identify potential datasets; (3) articulate the links between these EBVs and global indicators; and (4) provide guidance to national biodiversity networks in terms of in situ monitoring of these EBVs (through, eg, the production of reports/guidelines).
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2017,2018
URL http://geobon.org/working-groups/ecosystem-function/
 
Description Interviews for national news (multiple) 
Form Of Engagement Activity A press release, press conference or response to a media enquiry/interview
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Public/other audiences
Results and Impact press release around paper on urban biomass, picked up by multiple print and online media sources, live interviews (BBC TV, radio, Sky News).
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2018
 
Description Invited plenary talk at EARSEL Imaging Spectroscopy Workshop 
Form Of Engagement Activity A talk or presentation
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Professional Practitioners
Results and Impact I gave a talk on emulation of radiative transfer models and on the use of data assimilation techniques for biophysical parameter retrieval. The approach was deemed very interesting for the spectrsocopy community, and a number of collaborations have been started.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2017
 
Description MEE blog piece on airborne LiDAR 
Form Of Engagement Activity Engagement focused website, blog or social media channel
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Public/other audiences
Results and Impact I was invited to write a short blog-piece for the journal Methods in Ecology and Evolution for National Tree Week.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2016
URL https://methodsblog.wordpress.com/2016/12/01/airborne-lidar/
 
Description NERC summer school in Field Spectroscopy 
Form Of Engagement Activity Participation in an activity, workshop or similar
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach National
Primary Audience Postgraduate students
Results and Impact I took part on a summer school for NERC PhD students on field spectroscopy, in collaboration with other scientists. My role consisted in giving lectures on radiative transfer theory and biophysical parameter inversion, leading computational laboratories and demonstrating field spectroscopy techniques. Some of the students were unaware of these theoretical framework for their research, and will probably make use of it on their own work.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2015
URL http://jgomezdans.github.io/barrax_2015/
 
Description Press activities around new papers on Weighing Trees with Lasers 
Form Of Engagement Activity A press release, press conference or response to a media enquiry/interview
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Media (as a channel to the public)
Results and Impact Press release around release of new papers on laser measurements of forests, featuring in a series of papers in the Royal Society Interface journal, coming out of our themed meeting in February 2017. My work featured on the cover of the journal and an accompanying press release by UCL was picked up widely by the print and broadcast media, including: BBC and Sky radio, Sky News, Independent, Mail Online, BT news etc., leading to various radio and print interviews.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2018
URL http://disneytls.blogspot.co.uk/2018/02/royal-society-super-special-issue-on-tls.html
 
Description Royal Society Workshop 
Form Of Engagement Activity Participation in an activity, workshop or similar
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Other audiences
Results and Impact A Royal Society-funded workshop on 'The terrestrial laser scanning revolution in forest ecology'. Co-organised the meeting, secured funding from the Royal Society, and then acted as joint associate editor for the resulting special issue of the Royal Society journal. Aimed to showcase widely the new opportunities for TLS measurements in ecology.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2017
URL https://royalsociety.org/science-events-and-lectures/2017/02/forest-ecology/
 
Description Supervision of SURE project summer student 
Form Of Engagement Activity A formal working group, expert panel or dialogue
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach Local
Primary Audience Undergraduate students
Results and Impact Undergraduate engagement activity in which a student takes on a small research project. This is a means of attracting undergraduate students to EO science and possible further postgraduate study in this area.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2017
URL https://www2.le.ac.uk/departments/physics/workopps/sure
 
Description The Conversation piece on paper on Urban Forests 
Form Of Engagement Activity Engagement focused website, blog or social media channel
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Public/other audiences
Results and Impact An invited piece based on the press release on our work on urban forests. 80K reads so far since publication.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2018
URL http://theconversation.com/urban-forests-can-store-almost-as-much-carbon-as-tropical-rainforests-988...
 
Description Victoria and Albert Museum 
Form Of Engagement Activity Participation in an activity, workshop or similar
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Public/other audiences
Results and Impact Our lidar data from a tropical forest in Brazil is featuring as part of a major new exhibition at the V&A, The Future Starts Here, as well as in the book accompanying the exhibition. The exhibition "will bring together more than 100 objects as a landscape of possibilities for the near future." - as part of this, scientific measurements which are allowing us to see the world in new ways are explored. Our data are used to show the possibilities for measuring forests, understanding tropical climates, and showing audiences what being in such a forest is like. The hope is it will help to raise awareness of the structural complexity and beauty of these environments, potentially allowing us to see their 'value' in new ways.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2018
URL https://www.vam.ac.uk/exhibitions/the-future-starts-here#intro
 
Description Victoria and Albert Museum exibition 
Form Of Engagement Activity Participation in an activity, workshop or similar
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach National
Primary Audience Public/other audiences
Results and Impact My work features in an ongoing major V & A exhibition: The Future Starts Here. This includes a video installation showing lidar data collected in tropical rainforests and shown with a caption.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2018
 
Description librat workshop 
Form Of Engagement Activity Participation in an activity, workshop or similar
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Professional Practitioners
Results and Impact Created and delivered a 2-day librat workshop to researchers from the National Land Survey of Finland
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2016