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Lecture series on the Landsat Program remote sensing course for college juniors and seniors

February 2023 — Paige Williams, a PhD Candidate at Virginia Tech, led a lecture series on the Landsat Program for the junior/senior level remote sensing course in the Department of Forest Resources and Environmental Conservation at VT in February.

The first part of the lecture series introduced the history, current state, and future plans for the Landsat Program.

The second part incorporated a hands-on exercise with the STELLA hand-held spectrometer. Paige provided a range of different materials (ex: different colored fruits, flowers, alive/dead leaves, fake plants, concrete, etc). Students were also encouraged to bring their own materials for a sample measurement

Different materials - STELLA

The hands-on activity took place outdoors, and students sampled the different materials with the spectrometer while viewing the live graphs on the STELLA data viewer. Students thoroughly enjoyed the exercise and had many insightful questions about how different objects reflect light.


Virginia Tech provides a free service for students to 3D print whatever they would like through the Prototyping Studio in the campus library. She used this resource to print the snap-on beam guide with the field of view of the spectrometers. She plans on printing more STELLA’s for educational purposes in relation to VT’s Geospatial Extension Program.

-Paige Williams, PhD Candidate at Virginia Tech