Environmental Applications

Environmental topics, ranging from landscape assessments in general, to more specific applications like environmental hazards, habitat mapping, or urban green structures, benefit from spatial image analysis that enables to identify and delineate, including through temporal aspects, a range of complex information classes.


Landslides constitute a major natural hazard with significant worldwide impact. The increased availability and quality of remote sensing data and efficient methods such as OBIA allow for the comprehensive mapping of landslides. Our applications include the development of novel semi-automated OBIA methods for detecting and classifying landslides by the integrated use of optical, radar and DEM data, landslide hotspot mapping, the development of web-based tools for landslide investigation, the spatio-temporal monitoring of surface morphology changes, or the automated detection of locations of abrupt landslide-river interference and resulting natural hazard cascades. Findings from the analysis of recent and historical remote sensing data can provide useful information for predicting unstable areas prone to landslides, and thus, can serve as input for spatial planning, risk zone identification, and hazard mitigation. Therefore, improving our capability to map and monitor landslides has considerable practical implications and socio-economic importance.

Contact person: Daniel Hölbling

Habitat mapping
Intense monitoring is required to capture habitats and habitat quality of ecological sensitive plant and animal communities. Remote sensing fosters the opportunity for regularly and area-wide habitat- and biotope-type mapping, whereby OBIA is used for combined data analyses and modelling.

Contact person: Thomas Strasser, Barbara Riedler

Urban green
The subject analyses urban green space with a variety of methods, including remote sensing and OBIA, for mapping quantitative information and integrating it with qualitative information for an estimation of the value of urban green (to be used in urban planning, regional planning etc)

Contact persons: Florian Albrecht, Daniel Hölbling, Antonia Osberger