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About Peter Wolter

Peter is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Natural Resource Ecology and Management at Iowa State University.  His broad interests include forest ecosystem monitoring using satellite remote sensing technology. Currently, he is investigating the combined use of ground and satellite sensor data to calibrate models for estimating burnable forest canopy bulk density in the Arrowhead region of northern Minnesota.  The aim is to be able to accurately and efficiently monitor and measure forest biophysical parameters critical for modeling forest fire behavior in this region, which has stubbornly defied traditional modeling strategies using conventional approaches.  Successful calibration of these needed forest parameters, using readily available satellite sensor data, will provide a framework for semi-automated, periodic updates to track structural changes and transform forest fire risk assessment in this region. Peter completed his Ph.D. at UW-Madison with Dr. Phil Townsend in May of 2009. His dissertation work focused on using synoptic polar orbiting sensors (Landsat, SPOT, Radarsat, and PALSAR) to model and map forest biophysical parameters (e.g., tree species abundance, tree size, basal area, crown closure, etc.) in northern Minnesota to support ongoing studies focused on understanding landscape-level insect outbreak dynamics which may lead to the design of more pest-resistant landscapes through adaptive forest management.


Present Assistant Professor, Iowa State University Department of Natural Resource Ecology and Management


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Contact Information

339 Science 2
2310 Pammel Dr
Ames, IA 50011


Peer-Reviewed Articles (17)

Non-Peer Reviewed Articles (1)

Conference Proceedings (2)

Reports (1)

Working Papers (2)