Research Projects

Grant will fund creation of cloud-based program for survey data

A grant awarded to a group of 10 Natural Resources Districts and Conservation and Survey Division at University of Nebraska-Lincoln will fund the creation of a cloud-based software program, Nebraska GeoCloud, that will make available all airborne electromagnetic survey data for Nebraska.
A grant awarded to a group of 10 Natural Resources Districts and Conservation and Survey Division at University of Nebraska-Lincoln will fund the creation of a cloud-based software program, Nebraska GeoCloud, that will make available all airborne electromagnetic survey data for Nebraska. Continue the Story

U2U program wrapping up, brought climate tools to farmers

Researchers at nine universities, including University of Nebraska-Lincoln, and the U.S. Department of Agriculture are celebrating the completion of a six-year, $5 million program that reinvented the way climate scientists connect with farmers.
Researchers at nine universities, including University of Nebraska-Lincoln, and the U.S. Department of Agriculture are celebrating the completion of a six-year, $5 million program that reinvented the way climate scientists connect with farmers. Continue the Story

Detecting seasonal changes in evergreens provide new tool in climate change research

Though not apparent to the naked eye, evergreen conifers actually do go dormant in the winter. Researchers recently visualized this dormancy and a spring awakening using newly available satellite data. The discovery could improve scientists' understanding of how conifer photosynthetic activity is changing in a warming climate, and could provide a way to assess evergreen forests' role in the global carbon budget, which so far has been elusive.
Though not apparent to the naked eye, evergreen conifers actually do go dormant in the winter. Researchers recently visualized this dormancy and a spring awakening using newly available satellite data. The discovery could improve scientists' understanding of how conifer photosynthetic activity is changing in a warming climate, and could provide a way to assess evergreen forests' role in the global carbon budget, which so far has been elusive. Continue the Story

Shulski, Umphlett earn grant to aid cities in planning for extreme weather impacts

Climatologists Martha Shulski and Natalie Umphlett recently were awarded just over $200,000 to analyze climate data for cities planning for extreme and damaging weather events.

The grant from the NOAA Climate Program Office's Sectoral Applications Research Program will run through June 2018 and will focus on determining critical precipitation levels for municipal water resource management. It will target 10 cities in Missouri, Iowa, Nebraska and Kansas, four of the lower Missouri River Basin states.
Climatologists Martha Shulski and Natalie Umphlett recently were awarded just over $200,000 to analyze climate data for cities planning for extreme and damaging weather events. The grant from the NOAA Climate Program Office's Sectoral Applications Research Program will run through June 2018 and will focus on determining critical precipitation levels for municipal water resource management. It will target 10 cities in Missouri, Iowa, Nebraska and Kansas, four of the lower Missouri River Basin states. Continue the Story

Climate Change Implications for Nebraska

<em>Understanding and Assessing Climate Change: Implications for Nebraska</em> documents many of the key challenges that Nebraska will face as a result of climate change. Commentaries from experts on Nebraska's water resources, energy supply and use, agriculture, forests, health, ecosystems, urban systems and rural communities, and infrastructure and vulnerabilities raise serious concerns about the impacts of projected changes in climate, but they also provide a starting point for discussions about the actions that we can take to overcome these challenges.
Understanding and Assessing Climate Change: Implications for Nebraska documents many of the key challenges that Nebraska will face as a result of climate change. Commentaries from experts on Nebraska's water resources, energy supply and use, agriculture, forests, health, ecosystems, urban systems and rural communities, and infrastructure and vulnerabilities raise serious concerns about the impacts of projected changes in climate, but they also provide a starting point for discussions about the actions that we can take to overcome these challenges. Continue the Story

Platte River - High Plains Aquifer (PR-HPA) Long-Term Agroecosystem Network (LTAR)

The Long-term Agroecosystem Research (LTAR) network, is an ARS-USDA effort that focuses on conducting research that addresses current and emerging issues in agriculture related to sustainability and profitability of agroecosystems in the face of climate change and population growth.
The Long-term Agroecosystem Research (LTAR) network, is an ARS-USDA effort that focuses on conducting research that addresses current and emerging issues in agriculture related to sustainability and profitability of agroecosystems in the face of climate change and population growth. Continue the Story

Research in Vegetation Cover Change and Invasive Woody Species

Vegetation cover in NE's riparian areas and grasslands and the resulting ecosystem processes are changing at an unprecedented rate, this change is attributed in part to encroachment of the native woody species <em>Juniperus virginiana</em> or eastern redcedar into these areas.
Vegetation cover in NE's riparian areas and grasslands and the resulting ecosystem processes are changing at an unprecedented rate, this change is attributed in part to encroachment of the native woody species Juniperus virginiana or eastern redcedar into these areas. Continue the Story

Drought Center Helps Prepare for Inevitable

The parched fields, dying orchards, disappearing reservoirs and first-ever mandatory water restrictions during California's drought grabbed the nation's attention this year. But climate scientists at UNL's National Drought Mitigation Center have been training governments and institutions to plan and prepare for such disasters since 1995. <br />

'The primary reason we formed the NDMC was to focus on how we could better prepare for drought and mitigate its effects,' said Donald Wilhite, founding director of the NDMC. For 40 years, Wilhite has studied the best strategies to cope with drought's complexities. While the NDMC is widely known for its role in producing the weekly U.S. Drought Monitor map, its mission is much larger.
The parched fields, dying orchards, disappearing reservoirs and first-ever mandatory water restrictions during California's drought grabbed the nation's attention this year. But climate scientists at UNL's National Drought Mitigation Center have been training governments and institutions to plan and prepare for such disasters since 1995.
'The primary reason we formed the NDMC was to focus on how we could better prepare for drought and mitigate its effects,' said Donald Wilhite, founding director of the NDMC. For 40 years, Wilhite has studied the best strategies to cope with drought's complexities. While the NDMC is widely known for its role in producing the weekly U.S. Drought Monitor map, its mission is much larger. Continue the Story

Zygielbaum readies remote sensing for spotlight in sorghum biofuel project

Zygielbaum will use remote sensing techniques developed by UNL's Center for Advanced Land Management Information Technologies, in addition to techniques developed elsewhere, to estimate phenotypic characteristics of plants such as the biomass, amount of pigments and amount of water in the leaves.
Zygielbaum will use remote sensing techniques developed by UNL's Center for Advanced Land Management Information Technologies, in addition to techniques developed elsewhere, to estimate phenotypic characteristics of plants such as the biomass, amount of pigments and amount of water in the leaves. Continue the Story

Implications of a Changing Arctic on the Water Resources and Agriculture in the Central U.S

A workshop, <em>Implications of a Changing Arctic on the Water Resources and Agriculture in the Central U.S.</em>, was held at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln, November 10-12, 2015. The focus of this workshop was on how the significant climatic and environmental changes being observed in the Arctic may be affecting changes in mid-latitude weather and the implications of these changes on the frequency of extreme weather and climate events (e.g., severe weather, droughts, floods, heat waves) in the Central U.S. Given the importance of the region as a breadbasket of the world, the goal of the workshop was to explore how these changing weather patterns may affect agriculture, water resources and other sectors in the region.
A workshop, Implications of a Changing Arctic on the Water Resources and Agriculture in the Central U.S., was held at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln, November 10-12, 2015. The focus of this workshop was on how the significant climatic and environmental changes being observed in the Arctic may be affecting changes in mid-latitude weather and the implications of these changes on the frequency of extreme weather and climate events (e.g., severe weather, droughts, floods, heat waves) in the Central U.S. Given the importance of the region as a breadbasket of the world, the goal of the workshop was to explore how these changing weather patterns may affect agriculture, water resources and other sectors in the region. Continue the Story

Human trafficking course explores understudied problem

Human trafficking is often hidden, out of view in communities both big and small. But thanks to a new class offering, University of Nebraska-Lincoln students are learning how common this crime is - even in the Great Plains.
Human trafficking is often hidden, out of view in communities both big and small. But thanks to a new class offering, University of Nebraska-Lincoln students are learning how common this crime is - even in the Great Plains. Continue the Story

Regional Scale ET Estimation with CREMAP

CREMAP (Calibration-free evapotranspiration mapping) is a novel ET estimation method that uses MODIS satellite information and some widely available meteorological data to map ET rates at about 1-km resolution in 8-day or monthly periods. Recently it has also been applied to a) map recharge rates to the groundwater in the Sandhills of Nebraska and in the Danube-Tisza interfluvial sand plateau region of Hungary; b) map recharge and surface runoff across Nebraska; c) derive recharge rates as a function of depth to the groundwater in the Platte River valley; d) map ET rates in Burkina Faso and across Hungary; e) identify changes in the hydrological cycle due to irrigation, land use/land cover change across the entire Republican River basin.
CREMAP (Calibration-free evapotranspiration mapping) is a novel ET estimation method that uses MODIS satellite information and some widely available meteorological data to map ET rates at about 1-km resolution in 8-day or monthly periods. Recently it has also been applied to a) map recharge rates to the groundwater in the Sandhills of Nebraska and in the Danube-Tisza interfluvial sand plateau region of Hungary; b) map recharge and surface runoff across Nebraska; c) derive recharge rates as a function of depth to the groundwater in the Platte River valley; d) map ET rates in Burkina Faso and across Hungary; e) identify changes in the hydrological cycle due to irrigation, land use/land cover change across the entire Republican River basin. Continue the Story

Carbon Science and Modeling Program

Current research at the Carbon Sequestration sites involves a second generation biofuel biomass removal project. We are examining the impact of removing biomass on the carbon sequestration of irrigated maize-based agroecosystems. We are also examining biophysical factors that control interannual variability of the carbon exchange components (gross primary, production, ecosystem respiration, and net ecosystem exchange).
Current research at the Carbon Sequestration sites involves a second generation biofuel biomass removal project. We are examining the impact of removing biomass on the carbon sequestration of irrigated maize-based agroecosystems. We are also examining biophysical factors that control interannual variability of the carbon exchange components (gross primary, production, ecosystem respiration, and net ecosystem exchange). Continue the Story

Research explores ag advisers' ability to communicate climate info

A team of researchers led by UNL's Tonya Haigh have determined that relatively little is known about the readiness of different types of agricultural advisers to use weather and climate information to help their clients manage risk under increasing climate uncertainty.
A team of researchers led by UNL's Tonya Haigh have determined that relatively little is known about the readiness of different types of agricultural advisers to use weather and climate information to help their clients manage risk under increasing climate uncertainty. Continue the Story

Atlas analyzes 2012 elections from geographical perspective

"Atlas of the 2012 Elections," employs a geographical perspective to analyze virtually every aspect of the 2012 U.S. presidential election, in addition to selected state and local elections.
"Atlas of the 2012 Elections," employs a geographical perspective to analyze virtually every aspect of the 2012 U.S. presidential election, in addition to selected state and local elections. Continue the Story

Franz brings soil-moisture monitoring technology from cornfield to battlefield

A cosmic-ray neutron rover may sound like something from a science-fiction film, but Trenton Franz is developing the high-tech tool to help the military better understand the harsh environment in which it operates.
A cosmic-ray neutron rover may sound like something from a science-fiction film, but Trenton Franz is developing the high-tech tool to help the military better understand the harsh environment in which it operates. Continue the Story

Kilic's team partners with Google for U.S. Climate Data Initiative

The new U.S. Climate Data Initiative includes a partnership involving UNL, Google, the University of Idaho and the Desert Research Institute. Ayse Kilic, associate professor, will use the added resources to augment water information
The new U.S. Climate Data Initiative includes a partnership involving UNL, Google, the University of Idaho and the Desert Research Institute. Ayse Kilic, associate professor, will use the added resources to augment water information Continue the Story