2018 Fellow

Presented to: Dr. James Garrison

Citation: For contributions in developing and applying GNSS reflectometry methods for space-based and airborne remote sensing of oceanography, agriculture and hydrology; and expanding these methods to other signals-of-opportunity.


Prof. James Garrison has made groundbreaking contributions demonstrating that reflections of GNSS signals contain valuable information on surface scattering. His seminal research sparked the subsequent development of an entirely new Earth remote sensing instrument concept used to advance research leading to the competitive selection of the CYGNSS mission in the 2011 NASA Earth Ventures solicitation, to observe tropical storm intensification from a constellation of eight micro-satellites.

Prof. Garrison pioneered the application of reflectometry methods beyond GNSS to the general class of “Signals of Opportunity,” (SoOp) to enable new remote sensing capabilities in oceanography, agriculture and hydrology. He is the PI on a NASA Instrument Incubator Program project, partnering with NASA Goddard Space Flight Center and Exelis, Inc., to develop an airborne instrument prototype to demonstrate these measurements. He partnered with the Jet Propulsion Laboratory to develop a wideband ocean altimetry concept using reflectometry with K and Ku-band direct broadcast communication satellites, demonstrating centimeter-level precision in sea surface height retrievals. SoOp instruments built by Prof. Garrison’s students have flown on the NOAA Hurricane Hunter aircraft.

Prof. Garrison worked with the Scripps Institution of Oceanography to improve signal processing methods for retrieving humidity profiles from RO measurements made within developing hurricanes. He has also developed new wavelet-based arrayprocessing methods to extract coherent wave structure in the total electron content (TEC) time-series measured from large arrays of dual-frequency GNSS receivers used to show multiple ionospheric structures induced from atmospheric waves following natural and anthropogenic seismic events.

Prof. James L. Garrison is a professor of the School of Aeronautics and Astronautics at Purdue University. He holds a PhD from the University of Colorado at Boulder, an MS from Stanford University, and a BS from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute. He has authored over 100 technical publications and holds seven U.S. patents, one of which he shares a NASA Exceptional Space Act Award. He has received numerous awards including first prize in the GPS World Application’s Contest (1998), ION Early Achievement Award (2001) and ION Tycho Brahe Award (2015)