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Remote Sensing PhD Projects, Programmes & Scholarships in the UK

We have 16 Remote Sensing PhD Projects, Programmes & Scholarships in the UK

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We have 16 Remote Sensing PhD Projects, Programmes & Scholarships in the UK

PhD in Remote Sensing

Remote Sensing is the practice of observing geographical phenomena from afar. It is revolutionising the field of Geography by reducing the need for manual fieldwork and allowing geographers to gather data about dangerous or inaccessible regions.

As a PhD candidate in Remote Sensing, you might focus on collecting and analysing data about a particular region, type of terrain or geographical phenomenon. You could also work on developing or improving remote sensing technologies.

What’s it like to study a PhD in Remote Sensing?

You’ll be assigned a supervisory team that will guide you through the completion of an extended dissertation. Your final thesis should make a significant original contribution to the field.

Possible research areas include:

  • Automated crater detection and classification
  • Monitoring wildfire emissions
  • Carbon capture
  • Identifying geohazards
  • Semi-autonomous planetary exploration
  • Arctic surveillance
  • Weather forecasting

Your research might involve using sensors carried by planes, UAVs, satellites or drones. These sensors may have technological capabilities such as Light Detection and Ranging (LIDAR) or Sound Navigation Ranging (Sonar).

Alongside your research, you may be required to attend additional training in fundamental areas such as satellite data and machine learning. You may also have the chance to present at academic conferences and publish your work in journals.

There are a number of advertised projects available in Remote Sensing, but many candidates will design their own project.

PhD in Remote Sensing Systems entry requirements

To apply for a PhD in Remote Sensing, you’ll usually need a good upper-second class Bachelors degree in a relevant subject area. A Masters degree may sometimes be required. It’s worth noting that applications are considered on a case-by-case basis and a postgraduate qualification will often be an advantage even if is not compulsory.

PhD in Remote Sensing funding options

Depending on your specific focus, PhD projects in Remote Sensing might be funded by the Engineering and Physical Sciences Council (EPRSC) or the Natural Environment Research Council (NERC). Research Councils provide studentships that cover your tuition fees and living expenses.

Full studentships are very competitive, so many students will need to self-fund their PhD. There are numerous options for candidates taking this route, including the UK government’s doctoral loan, support from charities or trusts, and part-time employment.

PhD in Remote Sensing careers

Many PhD graduates in Remote Sensing will go on to pursue a career in research. You may also wish to seek work as a professional remote sensing or geospatial intelligence analyst. Remote sensing has applications in many sectors such as resource management, environmental conservation, urban planning and security.

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Autonomous reality capture: from 3D data acquisition to digital twin creation

With the recent release of Hexagon Geosystem’s BLK ARC and BLK2FLY technologies, the focus of creating automated large-scale 3D geospatial digital twins evolves from that of efficient primary data acquisition entirely to endgame interpretation and creation of the Building Information Model (BIM). Read more
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Aeolian ripple dynamics on Mars: remote sensing and airflow modelling using earth analogues

  Research Group: Geography and Environmental Studies
Small-scale wind-blown features are widespread sedimentary indicators of local wind dynamics on Mars and could potentially be a unique source of information on Martian wind regimes given the possibility to monitor them with time series of Remotely Sensed imagery, using  advanced techniques for registration and correlation of optical  images. Read more
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Soil carbon sequestration: monitoring and evaluation

  Research Group: Geography and Environmental Studies
Improved management of soil organic carbon content is fundamental for tackling climate change and food insecurity. Increasing soil carbon storage through a rise in soil organic carbon capture (SOC) has been promoted globally. Read more
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Developing a high-resolution spatial model to assess solar photovoltaic panel suitability for reduction of greenhouse gas emissions and energy costs

  Research Group: Geography and Environmental Studies
Low Carbon Technologies such as solar PV can reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions and generate electricity for self-consumption, which cut down the import of energy from the grid which is susceptible to energy price shocks. Read more
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Assessing energy efficiency of buildings – role of remote sensing data and geospatial methods

  Research Group: Geography and Environmental Studies
Climate change projections predict substantial impacts on cities and human development in future. The goal of Paris Agreement is to limit global warming to below 2°C rise, compared to the pre-industrial levels (1850-1900) and making an all-out effort to limit this increase to 1.5°C (UNFCCC, 2015). Read more

The relationship between vegetation and morphology in saltmarsh restoration schemes

Managed realignment, where coastal flood defences are breached or lowered to introduce tidal inundation to the coastal hinterland, is becoming an increasingly popular approach to coastal management to restore saltmarsh environments and compensate for habitat and ecosystem service loss elsewhere. Read more

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