Dick Birnie

I am involved in research using satellite remote sensing, image processing, and global positioning systems (GPS) for a variety of geologic and environmental applications. Remotely sensed data provide a unique way to view the earth's surface and the associated geologic and environmental processes. Satellite imagery provides a synoptic overview at scales not available through field work or conventional airphotos. The ability to image the earth at infrared wavelengths allows for spectral contrasts and discrimination beyond the visible; and the digital nature of satellite remotely sensed data allows for computer enhancements. Specific geologic research has focused on petroleum exploration in the Big Horn Basin, Wyoming; mineral exploration in the Pacific Northwest, Pakistan, and Brasil; and lithologic mapping in Greenland and India. More recently, the attention of the laboratory has turned to environmental projects in northern New England, including mapping of the clear-cutting history and ecotones related to biodiversity in the Northern Forest Lands and alpine tundra mapping in the above-tree-line areas of the Presidential range to develop indicators of possible global climate change.

122 Fairchild
HB 6105
Earth Sciences

Selected publications

Bryant, E.S., Birnie, R.W., and Kimball, K.D., 1993, Practical method of mapping forest change over time using Landsat MSS data: A case study from Central Maine: Proceedings of 25th International Symposium, Remote Sensing a Global Environmental Change, April 4-8, 1993, Graz, Austria, Vol. II. p. 469-480. 

Bammel, B.H. and Birnie, R.W., 1994, Spectral reflectance response of big sagebrush to hydrocarbon-induced stress in the Bighorn Basin, Wyoming: Photogrammetric Engineering and Remote Sensing. v.60, p. 87-96.

Bammel, B.H., Chamberlain, C.Page, and Birnie, R.W., 1994, Stable isotope evidence of vertical hydrocarbon microseepage, Little Buffalo Basin Oil Field, Big Horn Basin, Wyoming: Association of Petroleum Geochemical Explorationists, v.10, p. 1-23.

Wallace D., Birnie, R. W., and Gailits, E., 1997, Eyes On The Earth: Digital Filters: a 31 minute Videotape on the use of digital filters to enhance satellite data and their implications in art and math, Mathematics across the Curriculum, Dartmouth College, Hanover, NH.

Miller, A.B., Bryant, E.S., and Birnie, R.W., 1998, An analysis of land cover changes in the Northern Forest of New England using multitemporal Landsat MSS data: International Journal of Remote Sensing, v. 19, no 2, p. 245-266.