By Margaret Kalacska (Associate Professor, Geography, McGill)
Remotely sensed data from aircraft and satellite platforms have become increasingly important tools in geography to model landscape characteristics, monitor changes over time, as well as to locate specific features of interest. In this presentation I will use examples from ongoing research projects to illustrate the utility of these tools for large-scale landscape characterization in both temperate and tropical ecosystems. I will also introduce ‘Mission Airborne Carbon-13’, the first Canadian airborne hyperspectral mission to Costa Rica. From a forensic perspective I will describe recent breakthroughs in my collaborative research on clandestine grave detection in both Canadian and international contexts.
Dr. Kalacska completed her PhD at the University of Alberta in the Earth and Atmospheric Sciences Department with a specialization in remote sensing and geographic information systems. Subsequently, she was a postdoctoral fellow in the School of Criminology at Simon Fraser University where she began developing her research in forensic remote sensing. She joined the Geography Department at McGill University in 2008. Combining her expertise in remote sensing with her interests in ecology and forensics, her main research focuses on the use of data collected from aircraft and satellites to address a range of questions from aboveground carbon assessments in temperate and tropical forests to clandestine grave detection.