Outstanding PhD student from IGN receives honor – University of Copenhagen

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03 October 2017

Outstanding PhD student from IGN receives honor

EXCELLENCE

On Friday, September 15, the University of Copenhagen’s Faculty of Science presented awards to three outstanding PhD’s for Theses completed and defended at SCIENCE over the past year. Among other things, the award seeks to honor new graduates and draw attention to the great efforts at SCIENCE to train new researchers who are able to make contributions towards solving societal challenges.

New knowledge equipping us for climate change

PhD Student Feng Tian

Feng Tian’s PhD project has led to groundbreaking advances in the use of satellite image time-series. Time-series imagery enables the analysis and evaluation of changes to terrestrial vegetation over past decades. Time-series are the key to understanding how climate change affects our planet's trees and plants.

Feng Tian’s research has contributed significantly to identifying the amount of and changes to the Earth's vegetation over the past 30 years - including in dry areas around the planet where our knowledge is severely limited.

This is of great relevance for natural resource management in countries already being affected by climate change. Feng Tian’s research is also being used to improve global monitoring of the Earth's carbon pools that are so critical for dealing with climate change down the road.

"Feng Tian presented groundbreaking research in the use of a special type of microwave satellite imagery that can potentially be used to quantify biomass on a global scale. He is the first to analyze this data set within the context of observations from the Earth's surface. This has significantly improved our understanding of the use of this new and exciting source of data for natural resource management," says supervisor and professor Rasmus Fensholt of the Department of Geosciences and Natural Resource Management.

Feng Tian has received a prestigious EU Marie Sklodowska-Curie postdoctoral fellowship to continue his research at Lund University, Sweden.