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Research project (§ 26 & § 27)
Duration : 2019-01-01 - 2020-12-31

The objectives for this expedition are focusing on a better scientific understanding of Lake Altaussee, Austria through its cultural, geological, and ecological significance. The priority was to obtain a multi-beam sonar map of Lake Altaussee and a sub-bottom profiling of the lake bed. Biologists from the Scripps Institution of Oceanography, San Diego, California, and from the Paul Ricard Oceanographic Institute (France) collected samples from all water-entry points and from the lake surface area. At the deepest part of the lake (74.2 m), a Deep Trekker remotely operated vehicle (ROV) provided an important view of a geological occurrence: images of colored sediment and rock suggested the presence of iron ore. The Team also collected water, sediment, snow and air samples destined to be tested for microfibers, with the goal being to understand the dynamics of these fibers and eventually, by collecting and analyzing two juvenile fish and a dozen copepods, determine if they enter the local food web.
Research project (§ 26 & § 27)
Duration : 2019-10-01 - 2022-09-30

For more than three decades, the Geologische Bundesanstalt (GBA) has been operating its own geophysical helicopter measurement system to determine various physical parameters. The motivation is the rapid determination of the structure of the subsurface from the air, especially in areas that are difficult to access (mountains, forests) with the realistic option of nationwide mapping in a short time.
Research project (§ 26 & § 27)
Duration : 2019-10-01 - 2021-09-30

Detailed knowledge of the composition of land cover and its evolution over time provides an important basis for the management and development of biosphere reserves. The technological advances of recent years and the increasing availability of remote sensing data in high temporal and spatial resolution offer new opportunities to derive relevant information about the actual situation and changes in the environment. The constellation of "Sentinel" satellites, as part of the Copernicus program of the European Commission together with the European Space Agency (ESA), makes a significant contribution to monitoring and managing the environment and to understanding the effects of climate change. The project proposed here builds on the initial experience and results from the evaluation of this data available through the Copernicus program since 2015. On the one hand, it aims to expand the existing land cover map for the Wienerwald Biosphere Reserve and improve the reference database. On the other hand, the possibility of transferability to other regions, especially the biosphere reserves "Salzburger Lungau & Kärntner Nockberge" and "Großes Walsertal", will be tested. Especially the different topographical and climatic conditions, as well as the different components of the vegetation, are expected challenges. As a basis, a thematically coarse land cover classification is carried out in a first step, which serves as the basis for subsequent more detailed considerations. One focus is on the expansion of the tree species map of the Wienerwald Biosphere Reserve to include further tree species and the development of a continuous monitoring plan concerning the effective use of the steadily increasing Sentinel-2 data. The aim is the spatial and temporal mapping of forest management activities and by any calamities caused changes. This enables a medium to a long-term assessment of the development of tree species composition and can support sustainable forest management. Besides, further practice-relevant parameters should be defined for the other land cover classes and derived from remote sensing data. The aim is to map the frequency and timing of the mowing of grassland areas and the bushing or reforestation of alpine pastures as well as the temporal and spatial development of the sealing of areas. For the evaluation of the temporal development, a characterization of the biosphere reserve Wienerwald based on historical Landsat satellite data for the period before 2015 is carried out. Starting in 2015, the first Sentinel-2 satellite data will be available for comparison.

Supervised Theses and Dissertations