The Kellner Lab is exploring the way that carbon is exchanged between the atmosphere and the tropics by conducting remote sensing measurements in Costa Rica.
Jim Kellner and others use remote sensing and statistics to quantify the structure and condition of ecosystems and to test hypotheses about how forests work. Central to their approach is the ability to collect frequent measurements at high spatial and temporal resolution. To achieve these objectives, they worked with commercial partners to develop the Brown Platform for Autonomous Remote Sensing (BPAR), a suite of sensors carried by a gas-powered helicopter drone. While the most highly resolved satellite data available today produce observations close to 1-meter resolution, BPAR increases this resolution by up to two orders of magnitude. In addition, the imaging spectroscopy technology housed by BPAR has shown great promise to address questions about plant physiology and the coupling between forests and the atmosphere. BPAR gives Kellner's team the ability to generate data at specific places at specific times, and the ability to produce time series separated by minutes to hours.