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+ SG Home > Earth Science Division > Biospheric Science Branch > James A. Brass
Earth Science Directory: Staff
Jim Brass
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James A. Brass

MS: 245-4
Education: B.S. Forestry and Remote Sensing, 1974
University of Minnesota

M.S. Forestry, Remote Sensing, 1976
University of Minnesota

Present Position: Branch Chief, Ecosyste Science and Technology Branch
Research Scientist, Earth System Science, Biospheric Science Branch
NASA-Ames Research Center, Moffett Field, CA

Adjunct Prof;, Cal State University, Monterey Bay

Professional Experience:
  • Branch management, ISO 9001 training
  • Principal Investigator and project manager for:
    • Global Effects of Biomass Combustion
    • Assessment of Fire Emissions in Brazil
    • EOS-MODIS Simulator Development
    • AIRDAS Disaster Assessment System
  • Member- Exchange Council

  • Current Professional Interest:
  • Regional and global effects of biomass combustion as related to nutrient cycling and trace gas generation.
  • Development of new technologies to monitor, characterize and manage wildland fire using remote sensing, telemetry (satellite and aircraft) and information systems.
  • Development of instruments and techniques for the use of UAVs for environmental monitoring.

  • Professional Societies, Committees, Boards:
  • American Society of Photogrammetry and Remote Sensing
  • Society of American Foresters
  • ASP Remote Sensing Committee
  • USDA Forest Service Remote Sensing Advisory Committee
  • USDA-Brazil International Advisory Committee
  • NASA Management and Operations Working Group
  • Member of U.S.-Brazil Fire Initiative
  • GOFC Member; Intl. Working Group on Fires

  • Special Accomplishments and Awards :
  • NASA Outstanding Leadership Medal
, 2005
  • American Society for Photographic and Remote Sensing Best Scientific Paper, 2000 (ERDAS Award)
  • USDA Distinguished Publication Award 1997
  • ARC Group Achievement Award 1989, 1991, 1993
  • NASA Award 1986, 1989
  • NASA Sustained Superior Performance, 1988, 1991, 1992, 1993, 1995
  • Federal Employee of the Year, Scientist, S.F. Region, 1990;
  • NASA Group Achievement Award, 1991, 1994, 1998
  • NASA Certificate of Recognition, 1992, 1993, 1994, 1995, 1996, 1997, 1998, 1999, 2000

  • Significant Tasks:
  • Chief, Ecosystem Science & Technology (Biospheric) Branch, 1992-3, 1998, 1999- presen
  • CO-PI Lodi Canyon Burn Experiment (Elected one of ten best experiments by Science News )
  • CO-PI for U.S.-Brazil Fire Initiative, 1991-2001
  • PI/Program Mgr. for initial development of EOS MODIS simulator
  • PI/Project Mgr. for Airborne IR Disaster Assessment System
  • PI/Asst. Proj. Mgr. for Science/Instrument. Dev. for ERAST
  • Adjunct Professor, Earth Science Inst., Cal. State Univ.

  • Selected Publications:
    Ambrosia, V. G., E. Hinkley, J. A. Brass, S. Buechel, D. Sullivan, J. Myers, and S. Schoenung. 2006.  The Western States UAV Fire Mission. Proceedings of the 11th Biennial Forest Service Remote Sensing Applications Conference. April 24-28, Salt Lake City, UT.

    Ambrosia, V. G., J. A. Brass, P. Greenfield, and S. Wegener. 2004. Collaborative efforts in R&D and applications of imaging wildfires. Proceedings, Tenth Biennial USDA-Forest Service Remote Sensing Applications Conference, April 5-9, 2004, Salt Lake City, UT.

    Ambrosia, V. G., S. S. Wegener, J. A. Brass, and S. M. Schoenung. 2004. The UAV Western States Fire Mission: Concepts, plans, and developmental advances. Proc., AIAA Third "Unmanned Unlimited" Technical Conference, Workshop and Exhibit, Sept. 20-23, Chicago, IL. (Paper No. 2004-6415).

    Ambrosia, V. G., S. S. Wegener, D. V. Sullivan, S. W. Buechel, J. A. Brass, S. E. Dunagan, R. G. Higgins, E. A. Hildum and S. M. Schoenung. 2003. Demonstrating UAV-acquired Real-time Thermal Data over Fires. Photogrammetric Engineering and Remote Sensing , 69(4): 391-402.
    Ambrosia, V. G., S. S. Wegener, J. A. Brass and S. W. Buechel. 2002. Demonstrating acquisition of real-time thermal data over fires utilizing UAV's. April 8-12, San Diego, CA. CD Paper No: ASPRS032: 1-13.
    Wegener, S. S., V. G. Ambrosia, J. Stoneburner, D. V. Sullivan, J. A. Brass, S. W. Buechel, R. G. Higgins, E. A. Hildum, and S. M. Schoenung. 2002. Demonstrating acquisition of real-time thermal data over fires utilizing UAVs. Proceedings of AIAA's First Technical Conference and Workshop on Unmanned Aerospace Vehicles, Systems, Technologies, and Operations, May 20-23, Portsmouth, VA. Paper No. AIAA-2002-3406.
    Ambrosia, V. G., J. A. Brass, S. S. Wegener, D. V. Sullivan, S. W. Buechel, and R. S. Dann. 2001. An Integration of Remote Sensing, Satellite Telemetry, GIS and Data Management utilizing UAV Airborne Platforms for Forest Fire Management. Proceedings, Third Intl. Workshop: Remote Sensing and GIS Applications to Forest Fire Management, New Methods and Sensors, European Association of Remote Sensing Laboratories (EARSeL), May 10-17, Paris, France.
    Brass, J. A., V. G. Ambrosia, R. S. Dann, R. G. Higgins, E. A. Hildum, J. McIntire, P. J. Riggan, S. M. Schoenung, R. E. Slye, D. V. Sullivan, S. Tolley, R. Vogler and S. Wegener. 2001. First Response Experiment (FiRE) using an Uninhabited Aerial Vehicle. Proc., Fifth International Airborne Remote Sensing Conference, Sept. 17-20, San Francisco, CA. CD paper no. 56: 1-9.
    Buechel, S., L. Pious, and J. Brass. 2001. Near-real Time Mapping for Fire Characterization and Model Calibration. Proc., Fifth International Airborne Remote Sensing Conference. CD Paper 101 pp. 1-8.
    Brass, J. A. 2000 . New Technologies for Disaster Management, Eighth Biennial Forest Service Remote Sensing Applications Conference, RS 2000, April 10-14, Albuquerque, NM.
    Brass, J., V. Ambrosia, R. Higgins, E. Hildum, S. Schoenung, R. Slye, D. Sullivan, H. Tran, R. Vogler, S. Wegener, and S. Tolley. 2000. Development of a Tactical and Strategic Thermal Reconnaissance of Wildfires Utilizing Uninhabited Aerial Vehicle Technology. Proc., Fire Conference 2000: The First National Congress on Fire Ecology, Prevention and Management, Nov. 27-Dec. 1, San Diego, CA.
    Radke, L. F, T. L. Clarke, R. Lockwood, P. Riggan, J. Brass, and R. Higgins. 2000. The WIldFire Experiment: Observations with Airborne Remote Sensors. Canadian Journal of Remote Sensing , Vol. XXIV: 77-86.
    Riggan, P. J., J. W. Hoffman, and J. A. Brass. 2000. Estimating Fire Properties by Remote Sensing. IEEE Journal, 223: 89-96.
    Ambrosia, V. G., S. A. Buechel, J. A. Brass, J. R. Peterson, R. H. Davies, R. J. Kane, and S. Spain. 1998. An Integration of Remote Sensing, GIS and Information Distribution for Wildfire Detection and Management. Photogrammetric Engineering and Remote Sensing, 64(10): 977-985.
    Sinha, R. P., J. A. Brass, V. G., Ambrosia, and C. A. Hlavka. 1998. Global Warming and the Burning of the Brazilian Cerrado: Evaluation of Burned Areas using Landsat MSS Imagery. Proc., ERIM Conference on Geology, July 9-14, San Diego, CA.
    Brass, J. A., L. S. Guild, P. J. Riggan, V. G. Ambrosia, R. N. Lockwood, J. A. Pereira, and R. G. Higgins. 1997. Characterizing Brazilian Fires and Estimating Areas Burned by Using the Airborne Infrared Disaster Assessment System. In Biomass Burning and Global Change , vol. 2, ed. Joel S. Levine, Cambridge, MA: MIT Press. 561-568.
    Brass, J. 1996. Fires and Global Change: Prospects for Remote Sensing Assessment. World Resources Review , 10(4). Woodridge, IL.
    Brass, J., V. G. Ambrosia, and R. Higgins. 1996. AIRDAS, Development of a Unique Four Channel Scanner for Disaster Assessment and Management. Second Intl Airborne Rem. Sens. Conf. and Exhibition. June 24-27, San Francisco, CA. 781-789.
    Brass, J. A., V. G. Ambrosia, P. J. Riggan, and P. D. Sebesta. 1996. "Consequences of fire on aquatic nitrate and phosphate dynamics in Yellowstone National Park." Ecological Implications of Fire in Greater Yellowstone. International Association of Wildland Fire (IAWF). 53-57.
    Hlavka, C. A., V. A. Ambrosia, J. A. Brass, A. R. Rezendez, and L. S. Guild. 1996. Mapping Fire Scars in the Brazilian Cerrado Using AVHRR Imagery. In Biomass Burning and Global Change , vol. 2, ed. Joel S. Levine, Cambridge, MA: MIT Press. 555-568.
    Miranda, A. C., H. S. Miranda, J. Lloyd, J. Grace, J. A. McItyre, P. Meir, P. Riggan, R. Lockwood, and J. Brass. 1996. Carbon Dioxide Fluxes over a Cerrado sensu stricto in Central Brazil. In Amazonia Deforestation and Climate , eds. J. H. C. Gash, C. A. Nobre, J. M. Roberts, and R. Victoria, 353-363. Chichester, UK: John Wiley & Sons.
    Riggan, P. J., J. A. Brass and R. N. Lockwood. 1996. Effects of Fire Severity on Nitrate Mobilization in Watersheds Subject to Chronic Atmospheric Deposition. Environmental Science and Technology , 28: 369-375.
    Riggan, P. H., S. Franklin, J. Brass, and F. Brooks. 1995. Perspectives on Fire Management in Mediterranean Ecosystems of Southern California. In Global Change and Mediterranean-Type Ecosystems , eds. J. Moreno and W. Oechel. Ecological Studies 117. New York: Springer Verlag.

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