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+ SG Home > Earth Science Division > Biospheric Science Branch Staff > Vern C. Vanderbilt
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Vern C. Vanderbilt
Vern C. Vanderbilt

MS: 245-4
650-604-4254
Vern.C.Vanderbilt@nasa.gov

Education: B.S., Electrical Engineering, 1968
Purdue University, West Lafayette, IN

M.S., Electrical Engineering, 1971
Purdue University, West Lafayette, IN

Ph.D., Electrical Engineering, 1976
Purdue University, West Lafayette, IN

Professional Experience:  
1990-Present Scientist, Ecosystem Science and Technology Branch, NASA-Ames Research Center, Moffett Field, CA
2004 & 2005 Lecturer (unpaid) and Associate (unpaid) in the Agricultural Experiment Station, http://www.cstars.ucdavis.edu/, University of California, Davis
1986-1989 Scientist, TGS, Inc., Moffett Field, CA
1980-1985 Engineer, Laboratory for Applications of Remote Sensing, Purdue University, West Lafayette, IN
1977-1979 Postdoctoral Fellow, Laboratory for Applications of Remote Sensing, Purdue University, West Lafayette, IN


Contributions: 25 years of leading studies of the physical properties of remotely sensed cover types, principally plant canopies. Following are examples of contributions (made with colleagues) that have had a significant impact on this field:
  • First to propose the thermal-regulatory advantage of the avian egg red edge reflectance ( Science , 1978).
  • First to suggest leaf and canopy polarization properties are due to a quasi specular reflection at the leaf surface ( IEEE Proceedings , 1985), now a widely accepted view.
  • First to develop a model for the specular reflectance and polarized reflectance of a plant canopy. ( IEEE Transactions on Geoscience and Remote Sensing , 1985)
  • First to divide diurnal canopy reflectance into symmetric and asymmetric components, linking the asymmetric component to changes in canopy water content. ( IEEE Trans Geos Remote Sensing , 1991)
  • First to propose use of the glitter (the reflection of sunlight from water) to discriminate inundated areas from non-inundated areas. ( IEEE Trans Geos Remote Sensing , 2002).


Honors and Awards: Three best papers of year: 1986, Transactions of the ASAE; 1991, IEEE Trans Geos Remote Sensing; 1993, Int. J. Remote Sensing.
  Invited oral presentation: Polarization of light by a plant canopy (approximate title), 1983, International Congress on Spectral Signatures of Objects in Remote Sensing, Bordeaux, France
  Invited oral presentation: Polarization of light by the atmosphere and plant canopies (approximate title), 1995, International Congress on Spectral Signatures of Objects in Remote Sensing, Val d'Isere, France


Publications: More than 30 peer reviewed journal publications plus four book chapters

Seven selected publications:

Bakken, G.S., V.C. Vanderbilt, W.A. Buttemer, and W.R. Dawson. 1978. Avian eggs thermoregulatory value of very high near-infrared reflectance. Science 200:321-323.

Vanderbilt, V.C., L. Grant, and C.S.T. Daughtry. 1985. Polarization of light scattered by vegetation. (invited) IEEE Proceedings 73:1012-1024.

Vanderbilt, V.C. and L. Grant. 1985. Plant canopy specular reflectance model . IEEE Transactions on Geoscience and Remote Sensing GE-23:722-730.

Vanderbilt, V.C., L.F. Silva, and M.E. Bauer. 1990. Canopy architecture measured with a laser . Applied Optics 29:99-106.

Herman, M. and V.C. Vanderbilt, 1997. Polarimetric observations in the solar spectrum for remote sensing purposes. Remote Sensing Reviews . 15:35-57.

Vanderbilt, V.C., G.L. Perry, G.P. Livingston, S.L. Ustin, M.C. Diaz Barrios, F.M. Bréon, M.M. Leroy, J.Y.Balois, L.A. Morrissey, S.R. Shewchuk, J.A. Stearn, S.E. Zedler, J.L. Syder, S. Bouffies, M. Herman. 2002. Inundation Discriminated using Sun Glint. IEEE Trans Geos Remote Sensing. GE-40:1279-1287.

Moran, M.S., S.J. Maas, V.C. Vanderbilt, E.M. Barnes, S.N. Miller and T.R. Clarke. 2004. Application of Image-based Remote Sensing to Irrigated Agriculture. In Manual of Remote Sensing, Volume 5. Edited by S.L. Ustin. American Society of Photogrammetry and Remote Sensing.

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