University Catalog 2005-2006

Earth Observing Systems (EOS)

School of Computational Sciences

304 Population Dimensions of Global Change (3:3:0)Prerequisites: 30 credits of prior course work. Interdisciplinary course combining knowledge from social sciences and environmental science to develop global understanding of the worldÕs population condition, issues, and related problems. Demographic concepts are applied using GIS and quantitative methods.

600 Communication Skills for Computational Scientists (1:2:0)Prerequisites: graduate standing. Develops basic set of essential skills for scientific communication and delivery of successful and informative oral presentations, with a focus on both scientific meetings and more general public presentations. Encourages students to develop and exercise scientific writing skills as applied to abstracts, manuscripts, and grants. Objectives are met through a combination of activities, including practical writing assignments, training in composing grants for extramural competition, and advice in developing and delivering oral presentations.

656/EVPP 652/GEOG 570 The Hydrosphere (3:3:0)Prerequisites: two semesters of calculus (partial differential equations recommended) or permission of instructor. Components and transfer processes within the hydrosphere, which consists of the aqueous envelope of Earth, including oceans, lakes, rivers, snow, ice,glaciers, soil moisture, groundwater, and atmospheric water vapor. Students gain understanding of the various components of the hydrosphere, spatial and temporal distributions, physics of transfer processes for redistribution, and an appreciation of waterÕs role in sustaining life and influencing global and regional energy and mass balance.

657/GEOL 601/GEOG 671 The Lithosphere (3:3:0) Prerequisite: graduate standing. Global-scale overview of the lithosphere, the solid nonliving Earth, its materials, cycles, plate tectonic and geomorphic processes; and history, including interactions with hydrosphere, atmosphere, and biosphere, and methods of analysis. Students will gain understanding of the materials, features, and landforms of solid Earth, and the processes by which they formed.

680 Environmental Applications of Integrated Geographic Information Technologies (3:3:0) Prerequisites: EOS 753, GEOG 550 or 585, or permission of instructor. Focuses on how geoinformation technologies, including GIS, RS, and GPS, and spatial analytical techniques can be used in an integrated manner to address various situations in environmental risk assessment, monitoring, and planning.

704 Spatial Analysis and Modeling of Population (3:3:0) Prerequisites: courses in quantitative methods and GIS recommended. Intermediate-level, population geography course discussing demographic concepts and spatial dimensions of population. Various indices, measures, and models commonly used in human geography are featured.

721 Biogeography (3:3:0) Prerequisites: courses in ecology, chemistry, and geology. Provides broad understanding of how physical geography and the environment influence spatial and temporal distribution of plants and animals on EarthÕs surface.

722 Regional and Global Issues in the Earth Sciences (3:3:0) Prerequisites: courses in ecology, chemistry, and physics.Provides basis for evaluating existing and emerging issues in the Earth sciences at regional and global scales, utilizing interdisciplinary scientific principles.

725 Advanced Hydrosphere (3:3:0) Prerequisites: two semesters of calculus (partial differential equations recommended), or permission of instructor. Uses mathematical and modeling approaches for in-depth study of the different components and transfer processes within the hydrosphere. Topics include transfer processes relevant for oceans, lakes, rivers, snow, ice, glaciers, soil moisture, ground water, and atmospheric water vapor.

740 Hyperspectral Imaging Systems (3:3:0) Prerequisites: CSI 660 or equivalent, or permission of instructor. Provides requisite materials to understand hyperspectral imaging technology and its many civilian and military applications. Emphasizes scientific principles involved and technology application to real-world imaging systems. Topics include hyperspectral concepts and system tradeoffs; data collection systems; calibration techniques; data processing techniques and software; classification methods; and case studies. Data processing techniques include N-dimensional space, scatterplots, spectral angle mapping, spectral mixture analysis, spectral matching, and mixture tuned matched filtering. Ground, airborne, and spaceborne hyperspectral remote sensing systems are discussed.

753 Observations of the Earth and Its Climate (3:3:0) Prerequisites: CSI 660 or introductory remote sensing course; environmental science, space science, physics, or chemistry undergraduate background; or permission of instructor. Provides requisite material to understand techniques of remote sensing and other observational methods as applicable to Earth science and global change. Surveys methodologies and their applications, including systematic study of how each part of the electromagnetic spectrum is used to gather data about Earth. Describes limitations imposed by satellite engineering, sensor limitations on data gathering, and a survey of data reduction specific to remote sensing applications. Also covers current research issues, including examples pertaining to the atmosphere, land masses, and oceans. Includes discussions of current efforts by NASA and NOAA to provide integrated data gathering and dissemination systems.

754 Earth Observing/Remote Sensing Data and Data Systems (3:3:0) Prerequisite: EOS 753 or permission of instructor. Covers accessing and applying Earth observations and remote sensing data for Earth system science research and applications. Major topics are data formats, analysis and visualization tools, advanced data analysis methods, and data applications. Also covers combining innovative information technology techniques and Earth science data to set up online data centers for accessing data through the web.

756 Physical Principles of Remote Sensing (3:3:0) Prerequisite: EOS 753 or permission of instructor. Emphasizes fundamental physical and mathematical principles of remote sensing. Also provides overview of the current Earth Observation System (EOS), as well as the National Polar-Orbiting Operational Environmental Satellite Systems (NPOESS), and the NPOESS Preparatory Project (NPP) missions.

757 Techniques and Algorithms in Earth Observing and Remote Sensing (3:3:0) Prerequisite: EOS 753 or permission of instructor. Covers retrieval, analysis, and application of geophysical parameters derived from remotely sensed data for Earth system research and applications. Includes theory of visible and infrared and microwave remote sensing, heritage sensors, sensor calibration, retrieval algorithms, validation, and error estimates.

758 Quantitative Methods in Remote Sensing (3:3:0) Prerequisites: EOS 753 and GEOG 580, plus knowledge of a computer language; or permission of instructor. Intermediate-advanced level course focusing on digital processing of Earth images, with significant coverage of hyperspectral images, mathematical and algorithmic foundations, analysis procedures, and computational implementations. Programming projects emphasized.

759 Topics in Earth Systems Science (3:3:0) Prerequisite: permission of instructor. Covers selected topics in Earth systems and global changes not covered in fixed-content Earth systems/global changes courses. May be repeated for credit as needed.

760 Advanced Remote Sensing Applications (3:3:0) Prerequisites: EOS 753 or GEOG 580 and GEOG 579. Focuses on applications of remote sensing in various important areas of Earth systems science, including analysis of the surface radiation budget, land cover, inland and coastal waterways, and soil moisture. Algorithms/techniques and examples discussed in detail.

771 Algorithms and Modeling in GIS (3:3:0) Prerequisites: prior course or experience in GIS and knowledge of a computer programming language. Examines several fundamental GIS algorithms based upon computational geometry and computer graphics. Also discusses issues in modeling features of different dimensions and surfaces in GIS. Significant programming expected.

772 Distributed Geographic Information Systems (3:3:0) Prerequisites: introductory course in GIS and some programming experience, or permission of instructor. Examines different aspects of science and technology in the context of distributed GIS. Includes general concepts, architecture, component design and development, and system integration as well as other advanced topics, including interoperability and agent-based GIS.

773 Interoperability of Geographic Information Systems (3:3:0) Prerequisites: EOS 754 and GEOG 553 or a course in GIS. Advanced course addressing theories, standards, and implementations of web-based interoperable geographic information systems for online data and information services. International standards, including OGC, and associated tools for interoperability reviewed in detailed.

791 Advanced Spatial Statistics (3:3:0) Prerequisites: GEOG 585 or STAT 535/554, or permission of instructor. Advanced course focusing on analyzing georeferenced or spatial data represented as points or polygons. Higher moments, point pattern analyses, and interpolations of points to surfaces will be addressed. Spatial regression also included.

792/EVPP 792/GEOG 792 Seminar in Earth Systems Science (2:2:0) Prerequisites: 15 graduate credits, including CSI 655, EOS 656 and 657. Seminar for Earth systems science graduate students who have background in EarthÕs major systems. Intended to be capstone experience. Seminars presented by faculty and students; topics vary from semester to semester.

840 Hyperspectral Imaging Applications (3:3:0) Prerequisites: CSI 660 or equivalent, or permission of instructor. Introduces advanced hyperspectral imaging and multisensor concepts with emphasis on real-world civilian and military applications. Topics include advanced hyperspectral concepts, multisystem tradeoffs, data collection and processing systems, imaging radar systems, laser systems, calibration techniques, data fusion, quantitative remote sensing techniques, data compression techniques, case studies, and U.S national policy. Applications and case studies include environmental, homeland security, medical, military, disaster mitigation, agricultural, and transportation.

854 Introduction to Planetary Boundary Layer (3:3:0) Prerequisite: CLIM 710 or 711, or permission of instructor. Explores interaction between atmosphere and EarthÕs surface, dealing with important exchanges of heat, mass, and momentum that occur continuously. Introduces numerical models for land surface and applications in numerical weather prediction. Vertical distributions of meteorological variables such as wind, temperature, and humidity discussed, as well as trace gas concentrations and their role in the energy balance near the surface.

855 Introduction to Mesoscale Atmospheric Modeling (3:3:0) Prerequisite: permission of instructor. Introduction to physical and numerical modeling issues involved in mesoscale atmospheric flows. These flows involve time and space scales associated with the diurnal cycle, atmospheric inertial mode, thermal and mechanical forcing due to mesoscale terrain inhomogeneities, mesoscale precipitation systems, and downscale energy transfer from synoptic scale to mesoscale due to nonlinear flow interactions.

900 Research Colloquium in Earth Systems and Geoinformation Sciences (1:1:0) Prerequisite:graduate standing. Presentations in specific research areas of Earth systems and geoinformation sciences by SCS faculty and staff, Mason faculty in related programs, and professional visitors. May be repeated for credit; however, a maximum of 3 credits may be applied to Earth systems and geoinformation sciences PhD.

998 Dissertation Proposal (1-12:0:0) Prerequisite: permission of instructor. Covers development of research proposal that forms basis for doctoral dissertation, under the guidance of dissertation director and doctoral committee. May be repeated as needed; however, no more than 12 credits of EOS 998 may satisfy doctoral degree requirements.

999 Doctoral Dissertation (1-12:0:0) Prerequisite: admission to and permission of instructor. Doctoral dissertation research under direction of dissertation advisor. May be repeated, but no more than a total of 24 credits in EOS 998 and 999 may be applied to doctoral degree.