Funded Graduate Position in Remote Sensing for Wildfire Risk Modeling

Dr. Chris Lippitt from the Department of Geography & Environmental Studies, University of New Mexico is seeking an M.S. student with research interest in wildfire modeling and ecology to start in Fall 2021. The successful applicants will be offered with competitive funding packages through a Research Assistantship supporting a collaborative project with Sandia National Laboratory. The student will work within the Center for the Advancement of Spatial Informatics Research and Education (ASPIRE) at the University of New Mexico.

For Fall 2021, Dr. Lippitt is seeking a student to support vegetation characterization with remote sensing and forecasting of wildfire behavior to 2020. Working closely with researchers at Sandia National Laboratory, wildfire risk forecasting efforts will support a larger effort to develop a framework that will digest daily satellite imagery and identify hazardous fuel conditions with machine learning techniques to create wildfire hazard maps that pinpoint areas that would be difficult to suppress if a fire were to occur, ultimately highlighting portions of the electric grid that are most at risk.

Applicants should have a degree in Geography, Statistics, Computer Science or a related discipline, and expertise in geographic information systems. Preference will be given to applicants with strong skills in python, R, Google Earth Engine, and remote sensing. The student will need to have access to Sandia National Laboratories facilities and data, and thus will need to undergo a background check. US citizenship is required for this position. Other research positions are available without citizenship restriction.

The application deadline is February 1, 2021 for the M.S. program. If you are interested in applying or have any questions about these positions, please send an email with your CV to Dr. Lippitt at

More info about M.S. program at the Department of Geography & Environmental Studies at the University of New Mexico can be found here.