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ABU assistant professor is published

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An assistant professor at Alderson Broaddus University recently published one paper and contributed to a second.

Aaron Maxwell, assistant professor of environmental science, appeared in GIScience & Remote Sensing and Journal of the American Water Resources.

The first paper compared satellite-based imagery and aerial-based imagery for mapping land cover in a mountaintop coal surface mine.

“My research focuses on means to improve the mapping of surface mines using imagery collected from satellites and aircraft,” Maxwell said. “This most recent paper compares aerial imagery and satellite imagery for mapping vegetation within a mountaintop mine permit.

“The goal of the research is to offer insight as to the best data for mapping mines and offers suggestions for improving the resulting map.”

Maxwell said his team found the satellite data were optimal for the classification.

“However, the accuracy of the classification based from aerial imagery could be improved by preprocessing the image using a variety of routines,” Maxwell said.

The second paper, written by Nicholas P. Zegre, entitled “Multiscale Analysis of Hydrology in a Mountaintop Mine-Impacted Watershed” was published in the Journal of the American Water Resources.

The paper looked at land use/land cover change resulting from mining throughout a watershed extent. His goal was to investigate hydrologic alterations resulting from mountaintop mining at multiple spatial and temporal scales. The work relates to how the quantity of water that flows in a stream can potentially be impacted by surface mines and valley fills.

Alderson Broaddus Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs Joan Propst described Maxwell as a “rising star.”

Maxwell currently is studying at West Virginia University to earn a doctorate degree in geology.