Out and about in the field

For the last year or so I have been working alongside members of the Open University Planetary Environments Research Group on developing some workflows and data processing techniques. The PI for the project is Dr Matt Balme and there have been a few post-doctoral researchers (Susan Conway, Talfan Barnie) the most recent of whom is Dr Alex Webb.

We are specifically researching the capabilities of land surface temperature (LST) derivation from satellite data, with an eye to including modelled information. As a test case the team have been working on calibration procedures of satellite derived LST data. This has involved the deployment of a hundred iButton sensors, at each of two sites. One site is in the UK, at Wytham Woods near Oxford. As we are interested in the temperature being recorded/derived for the surface, the locality being studied was a meadow rather than inside the woods themselves. Even so, as the images below show, there was a wide variability in the cover type.



Last September, members of the team (with help from Frances Butcher, an Open University PhD student) undertook the same type of calibration fieldwork in Iceland. The following two images show the difference in the site characteristics in comparison to that in the UK!



We are still in the process of analysing the data samples collected, but it’s always great to be able to get out into the field and undertake some proper physical geography and in situ data collection!