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In the broadest sense, the measurement or acquisition of information of some property of an object or phenomenon, by a recording device that is not in physical or intimate contact with the object or phenomenon under study; e.g., the utilization at a distance (as from aircraft, spacecraft, or ship) of any device and its attendant display for gathering information pertinent to the environment, such as measurements of force fields, electromagnetic radiation, or acoustic energy. The technique employs such devices as the camera, lasers, and radio frequency receivers, radar systems, sonar, seismographs, gravimeters, magnetometers, and scintillation counters.
The practice of data collection in the wavelengths from ultraviolet to radio regions. This restricted sense is the practical outgrowth from airborne photography. Sense (1) is preferred and thus includes regions of the EM spectrum as well as techniques traditionally considered as belonging to conventional geophysics.
From Manual of Remote Sensing
The Experts say "Remote Sensing is..."
Group of techniques for collecting image or other forms of data about an object from measurements made at a distance from the object, and the processing and analysis of the data.
- RESORS, CCRS
Remote sensing is the measurement and analysis of electromagnetic radiation reflected from, transmitted through, or absorbed and scattered by the atmosphere, the hydrosphere and by material at or near the land surface, for the purpose of understanding and managing the Earth's resources and environment.
- Larry Morley, Teledetection International
The acquisition of information about an object, without being in physical contact with that object.
- Christine Hutton, CCRS
Remote Sensing: the science and art of obtaining useful information about an object, area or phenomenon through the analysis of data acquired by a device that is not in contact with the object, area, or phenomenon under investigation.
- Lillesand, Thomas M. and Ralph W. Kiefer,"Remote Sensing and Image Interpretation",John Wiley and Sons, Inc, 1979, pp1.
Remote sensing is the collection of natural resources and environmental information using images acquired by sensors on board aircraft or spacecraft.
- Bob Ryerson, CCRS
Remote sensing may be broadly defined as the collection of information about an object without being in physical contact with the object. Aircraft and satellites are the common platforms from which remote sensing observations are made. The term remote sensing is restricted to methods that employ electromagnetic energy as the means of detecting and measuring target characteristics.
- Sabins, Floyd F. Jr. "Remote Sensing Principles and Interpretation", W.H. Freeman and Company, San Francisco. 1978, p1
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Alliance for Marine Remote Sensing (ARMS) - international nonprofit association which develops and promotes marine applications of remote sensing technologies.
OhioView - a consortium whose mission is to promote the low-cost distribution of U.S. Government civilian satellite data for public use.
Ontario Association of Remote Sensing (OARS) - non-profit organization dedicated to developing a better understanding and increasing the utilization of remote sensing technologies in Ontario.
Remote Sensing and Photogrammetry Society - promotes the interests of the earth observation community by linking academia with commerce, government, and international organisations.
Remote Sensing Open Source Project - a Linux based Open Source project to build software tools for satellite and aerial remote sensing.
Research Group and Lab
Arid Region Remote Monitoring - seeks to make practical contributions toward global monitoring using satellites and in-situ information.
Center for Spatial Analysis and Remote Sensing (CSULA) - California State University, Los Angeles - a test-bed for public access to Geographic Information Systems (GIS) and remote sensing information.
Center for the Study of Earth From Space (CSES) - use of remote sensing as a tool in the inderdisciplinary study of the earth.
Danish Center for Remote Sensing - Research on SAR polarimetry, SAR interferometry, microwave radiometry, sea ice, plant and soil mapping, aerodynamic roughness, and the dynamics of sand dunes.
Hawaii Institute of Geophysics and Planetology Hotspots - satellite thermal monitoring near-real-time images of select sites in the western hemisphere. Activity due to fires and volcanoes is highlighted.
InfraRed and Aeronomy Group - atmospheric research group interested in atmospheric remote sensing, the airglow, and ozone depletion.
International Research Centre for Telecommunications-transmission and Radar - works on atmospheric remote sensing of clouds, rain and turbulence using Doppler polarisation radars and other remote sensing instruments.
Kansas Applied Remote Sensing (KARS) Program - remote sensing research laboratory affiliated with the Kansas Biological Survey at the University of Kansas.
Michigan State University - Basic Science and Remote Sensing Initiative (BSRSI) - offers data and information about tropical forests and land use and land cover change (LUCC).
NASA Commercial Remote Sensing Program (CRSP) - formed to help commercialize remote sensing, geographic information systems, and related imaging technologies.
NASA Goddard Space Flight Center - Radiometric Calibration and Development Facility - remote sensor calibration, development, and monitoring. Home of the Shuttle Solar Backscatter Ultraviolet (SSBUV) experiment.
National Operational Hydrologic Remote Sensing Center - NOHRSC - maps snow cover for the US and Canada during the snow season. Satellite images, temperature maps and hydrologic models are available in near real-time.
University of California at Davis - Center for Spatial Technologies And Remote Sensing (CSTARS) - interpretation of remote sensing imagery, applications of geographic information systems, and landscape modeling of vegetation, hydrology, and climatology.
University of Georgia - CRMS specializes in image processing, GIS and desktop mapping for environmental monitoring applications.
University of Maryland Global Land Cover Facility - uses high performance computing to distribute earth science data from remote sensing sources to the global change research community.
University of Miami - GeoCORE GIS & Remote Sensing Facility - specializes in the use of GIS, GPS, remote sensing, and spatial analysis in scientific research, business, and education.
University of Wisconsin, Madison - Environmental Remote Sensing Center - interdisciplinary research on the application of remote sensing to environmental monitoring and resource management.
USGS Flagstaff Field Center - Terrestrial Remote Sensing Group - research and application project results, image processing software, satellite images, sonar mosaics, and other images of Antarctica, Central California, Arizona, and more.
Environmental Remote Sensing Laboratory (ERSL) - University of Nebraska at Lincoln - researching instrumentation and techniques used in remote sensing of the earth's surface and atmosphere.
Sandia National Laboratories - Synthetic Aperture Radar - SAR capabilities, technologies, imagery, movies, and more.
Remote sensing in Archaeology
GIS and Remote Sensing for Archaeology: Burgundy, France - outline of an archaeological project utilising remote sensing technology.
Remote Sensing Archeology Research at NASA - NASA uses remote sensing for archeological research in The Peten, Guatemala; Arenal region of Costa Rica; and Chaco Canyon in New Mexico.
Satellite Remote Sensing and Archaeology - provides a locus for information relating to the application of satellite imagery to archaeology. It includes an extensive bibliography and samples of images of archaeological sites.
Scientific American: Radar Archaeology - concerning "ground penetrating radar" a new "non-invasive" archaeological technique.
Department of Earth and Atmospheric Science, York University