The goal of our research is to characterize heterogeneous vegetation strcutrue using lidar remote sensing, to quantify its role on the function of land ecosystems and land surface biophysical processes and to advance the ability to predict terrestrial carbon fluxes and storage in reponse to anthropogenic environmental change.
We developed unique canopy radiative models to simulate how lidar senses vegetation structure, while the same models are being used in a demographic dynamic terrestrial ecosystem models to describe the how vegetation structure controls the land surface biophysical processes that contributes to CO2 uptake and emission. They are the key to integrate lidar vegetation structure measurements with dynamic terrestrial ecosystem models to assess the role of vegetation structure on carbon fluxes and stocks.
We also investigate snow-vegetation interactions and role of vegetation structure on surface energy and water balance, the timing of snowmelt, cover of snow, and snow albedo feedback (SAF) due to climate change. We aim to understand the cause of and reduce uncertainty of projections of climate warming over northern high latitude regions in Earth system models.