Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Digital Panoramas of Rangelands Could Be Rich Source of Research Data

21.09.2011
A scientist at the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) is exploring how rangeland ecologists could use high-resolution digital panoramas to track landscape changes.

Agricultural Research Service (ARS) hydraulic engineer Mary Nichols uses a digital camera to create a single high-resolution landscape panorama that users can zoom in on to study individual plants, animals or specific features in the landscape.

Nichols works at the ARS Southwest Watershed Research Center in Tucson, Ariz. ARS is USDA's chief intramural scientific research agency, and this work supports the USDA commitment to enhancing sustainable agriculture.

To create these images, Nichols places a digital camera on a robotic camera mount and takes a series of pictures as the mount rotates. Then a custom computer program stitches the pictures together to create a panoramic image. In the end, hundreds-and sometimes thousands-of individual detailed photographs become part of a single high-resolution landscape panorama.

In October and November of 2008, Nichols created three rangeland panoramas in Arizona to see if scientists could use the images to monitor riparian areas, wildlife or invasive plants. The resulting panoramas were so detailed that she could count the number of elk in a distant herd, and even evaluate the condition of each animal.

Nichols could also identify stands of invasive buffelgrass, which turns golden yellow in the fall and presents a striking contrast to surrounding vegetation. With this information in hand, it was possible to document the extent of the buffelgrass invasion in the Santa Catalina Mountains. This provided a baseline assessment of the plant's establishment that could be used to track its subsequent spread.

Researchers can share their panoramas by posting them on www.gigapan.org. Nichols is collaborating with other researchers to develop a website specifically for high-resolution rangeland panoramas.

Results from this work were published in 2009 in Rangeland Ecology & Management.

Read more about this and other similar research in the September 2011 issue of Agricultural Research magazine.

Ann Perry | EurekAlert!
Further information:
http://www.ars.usda.gov

More articles from Agricultural and Forestry Science:

nachricht Alkaline soil, sensible sensor
03.08.2017 | American Society of Agronomy

nachricht New 3-D model predicts best planting practices for farmers
26.06.2017 | Carl R. Woese Institute for Genomic Biology, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

All articles from Agricultural and Forestry Science >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Fizzy soda water could be key to clean manufacture of flat wonder material: Graphene

Whether you call it effervescent, fizzy, or sparkling, carbonated water is making a comeback as a beverage. Aside from quenching thirst, researchers at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign have discovered a new use for these "bubbly" concoctions that will have major impact on the manufacturer of the world's thinnest, flattest, and one most useful materials -- graphene.

As graphene's popularity grows as an advanced "wonder" material, the speed and quality at which it can be manufactured will be paramount. With that in mind,...

Im Focus: Exotic quantum states made from light: Physicists create optical “wells” for a super-photon

Physicists at the University of Bonn have managed to create optical hollows and more complex patterns into which the light of a Bose-Einstein condensate flows. The creation of such highly low-loss structures for light is a prerequisite for complex light circuits, such as for quantum information processing for a new generation of computers. The researchers are now presenting their results in the journal Nature Photonics.

Light particles (photons) occur as tiny, indivisible portions. Many thousands of these light portions can be merged to form a single super-photon if they are...

Im Focus: Circular RNA linked to brain function

For the first time, scientists have shown that circular RNA is linked to brain function. When a RNA molecule called Cdr1as was deleted from the genome of mice, the animals had problems filtering out unnecessary information – like patients suffering from neuropsychiatric disorders.

While hundreds of circular RNAs (circRNAs) are abundant in mammalian brains, one big question has remained unanswered: What are they actually good for? In the...

Im Focus: RAVAN CubeSat measures Earth's outgoing energy

An experimental small satellite has successfully collected and delivered data on a key measurement for predicting changes in Earth's climate.

The Radiometer Assessment using Vertically Aligned Nanotubes (RAVAN) CubeSat was launched into low-Earth orbit on Nov. 11, 2016, in order to test new...

Im Focus: Scientists shine new light on the “other high temperature superconductor”

A study led by scientists of the Max Planck Institute for the Structure and Dynamics of Matter (MPSD) at the Center for Free-Electron Laser Science in Hamburg presents evidence of the coexistence of superconductivity and “charge-density-waves” in compounds of the poorly-studied family of bismuthates. This observation opens up new perspectives for a deeper understanding of the phenomenon of high-temperature superconductivity, a topic which is at the core of condensed matter research since more than 30 years. The paper by Nicoletti et al has been published in the PNAS.

Since the beginning of the 20th century, superconductivity had been observed in some metals at temperatures only a few degrees above the absolute zero (minus...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

Call for Papers – ICNFT 2018, 5th International Conference on New Forming Technology

16.08.2017 | Event News

Sustainability is the business model of tomorrow

04.08.2017 | Event News

Clash of Realities 2017: Registration now open. International Conference at TH Köln

26.07.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

A Map of the Cell’s Power Station

18.08.2017 | Life Sciences

Engineering team images tiny quasicrystals as they form

18.08.2017 | Physics and Astronomy

Researchers printed graphene-like materials with inkjet

18.08.2017 | Materials Sciences

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>