Yong Wang

Geography & Remote Sensing

Brewster A-221
Curriculum Vitae (PDF)

Ph. D., Geography, University of California, Santa Barbara, CA, USA
MS, Geography, University of California, Santa Barbara, CA, USA
B.S, Electrical Engineering, Northwestern Polytechnical University, Xi’an, China


Areas of Interest: SAR imaging algorithm development, SAR remote sensing and application in Earth observation, Evaluation of surface deformation using InSAR techniques and multitemporal SAR datasets, Investigation of scale and scale effect on SAR application to urban target, Thin cloud removal for optical imagery, and Flooding mapping using geospatial datasets

With the development of the Santa Barbara radar backscattering model for woodland in 1999s, Dr. Wang advanced the understanding and knowledge of radar backscattering in forested environments and study of the environments using SAR remote sensing technology and observation. He has established himself as a well-respected modeler.

As a Chinese by birth, Dr. Wang is constantly interested in the development in China. With the innovative algorithm to fill voids in the US/NASA SRTM (Shuttle Radar Topography Mission) Version 1 data, he and co-authors published a study about the Three Gorges Reservoir in 2005. The volumes, surface areas, and lengths at different surface water levels behind the dam were independently assessed and verified with a validated approach and public domain datasets.

With the NASA/GLAS (Geoscience Laser Altimeter System) and MODIS (Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer), he assessed that the water resources in the Hanjiang basin might not be adequate to fulfill the demand to transfer the basin’s water to northern China. The recent news and development validate his assessment of the over-reaching demand on the water resources as another development in the making to channel the Changjiang water into the Hanjiang basin.

Impacted by devastating and frequent hurricane-induced floods in North Carolina and the US in general, Dr. Wang applied the geospatial techniques and datasets in flood mapping and inundation extent prediction. He developed efficient methods to map flood extent in a coastal floodplain using Landsat, DEM (Digital Elevation Model), and SAR (Synthetic Aperture Radar) datasets, coupled with the HEC-RAS (Hydrologic Engineering Center-River Analysis System) simulations. The US Army Corps of Engineers develops the HEC-RAS model.

Dr. Wang’s thin-cloud removal study was not only published in the prestigious IEEE TGARS and Remote Sensing of Environment journals but has also attracted the attention of the scientists and managers in different levels at the United States Geological Survey (USGS) headquarter, Reston, VA and Earth Resource Observation and Science Center, Sioux Falls, SD.


Courses Taught

  • GEOG 1000: People, Places, and Environments
  • GEOG 1250: Water in the Environment
  • GEOG 2400: Spatial Data Analysis
  • GEOG 2410: Fundamentals of GIS
  • GEOG 3420: Remote Sensing of the Environment
  • GEOG 3430: Geographic Information Systems I
  • GEOG 4420: Remote Sensing II
  • GEOG 6150: Quantitative Methods in Geography
  • GEOG 6400: Seminar in Geographic Information and Analysis
  • GEOG 6420: Advanced Remote Sensing