The RSWS group combines principles of environmental spectroscopy, ecohydrology, and limnology and uses novel Earth Observation approaches in combination with process models to advance water systems research. Our research activities include the method development to assess water in the soil-vegetation-atmosphere system and understand the role of vegetation functioning for water cycle dynamics. We develop new fluorescence spectroscopy based approaches to complement available remote sensing observations and contribute advancing aquatic research.

Core research projects


FLEX: The Fluorescence Explorer is European Space Agency's (ESA) 8th Earth Explorer mission to measure plant photosynthesis from space. We are part of this upcoming space endeavor. Learn more here.

SIF4WUE: A project funded by the Plant Science Centre (PSC) and Syngenta to improve measurements of plant transpiration for sustainable agricultural water use.

AtmoFLEX: A European network activity by the European Space Agency (ESA) to deploy gound-based instruments for long term measurements of red and far-red sun induced chlorophyll fluorescence. We contribute with the Lageren site to this network.

FLEXSense: A European remote sensing campaign in 2018 funded by the European Space Agency (ESA) to collect critical data for the FLEX mission development. We contribute with our Swiss sites Lageren (forest), Greifensee (inland water), and to the coastal water site in Italy.

FLUOSpecchio: A spectral data base system for cross scale validation of FLEX mission data products by the European Space Agency (ESA).


PhD Projects


Ahmed, Rifat. Remote Sensing of Ecosystem Transpiration. University of Zurich (CH), Faculty of Science. (A. Damm, J. Seibert, E. Paul-Limoges, U. Rascher, E. Haghighi)

Gupana, Remika. Remote Sensing of Algae Occurrence and Composition. University of Zurich (CH), Faculty of Science, and Eawag (CH). (A. Damm, D. Odermatt, F. Altermatt, C. Giardino, L. Nedbal)

Sturm, Joan Tracy. Remote Sensing of climate-vegetation feedback's. University of Zurich (CH), Faculty of Science, and Eawag (CH). (A. Damm, E. Paul-Limoges, TBD)



Braun, Daniela (2017). Remote Sensing of Ecosystem Services. University of Zurich (CH), Faculty of Science. (A. Damm, M.E. Schaepman, O. Petchey, L. Hein, (WUR))

Naegeli, Kathrin (2017). State, change and impact of glacier surface albedo in the Swiss Alps. University of Fribourg (CH). (M. Hoelzle, M. Huss, A. Damm (UZH), A. Kääb, (University of Oslo))