Department of Environmental Sciences

Faculty: Richard Becker

Richard Becker

Ph.D. Western Michigan University 2008

Research and Teaching Interests

Environmental applications of remote sensing and GIS, including:
  • Land subsidence
  • Toxic algal blooms
  • Groundwater resources

419.530.4571 |

Research Recent Publications
Courses View Vitae


Dr. Becker researchAt the Environmental Remote Sensing Lab, we undertake research which incorporates an interdisciplinary research approach (remote sensing, geochemistry, hydrologic modeling, and field techniques) to investigate a wide range of geological and environmental problems including the assessment of responses of natural systems to climatic and human activities.

Examples of these include: Identifying and mapping potential harmful algal blooms from satellite images, and examining impacts of land use change on blooms and other systems in the Laurentian Great Lakes. In addition we study the impact on the Nubian aquifer in Northeastern Africa and Nile watershed of the construction of the Aswan High Dam, from changing recharge in the system to changing subsidence in the Nile Delta, to investigating the effects climate change has had on this system.

To do this we utilize a variety remote sensing and GIS techniques to investigate water resources and the impacts that human use may have on them.

More information: Dr. Becker's lab webpage.


Recent Publications

View Dr. Becker's Google Scholar page.

Othman A., Sultan, M., Becker, R., Alsefry, S., Alharbi, T., Alharbi, H., Gebremichael, E., Fathy, K., 2018, Depletion of Fossil Aquifers and Land Deformation, Surveys in Geophysics, doi:10.1007/s10712-017-9458-7

Ortiz, J.D., Avouris, D., Schiller, S., Luvall, J., Lekki, J., Tokars, R., Anderson, R., Shuchman, R., Sayers, M., Becker, R., 2017, Intercomparison of Empirical Line Method Vicarious Hyperspectral Reflectance Calibration Methods, Front. Mar. Sci. 4:296. doi: 10.3389/fmars.2017.00296

Lekki, J , Anderson, R., Avouris, D., Becker, R.H., Cline, M.T., Leshkevich, G., Liou, L., Luvall, J.C., Ortiz, J.D., Ruberg, S.A., Sawtell, R., Sayers, M., Schiller, S., Shuchman, R.A., Simic, A., Stuart, D.G., Tokars, R., and Vander Woude, A.J., Airborne Hyperspectral Sensing of Harmful Algal Blooms in Great Lakes Region: System Calibration and Validation From Photons to Algal Information: The Processes In-Between, NASA Technical Memorandum

Ouyang*, Z., Shao. C., Chu, H., Becker, R., Bridgeman, T., Stepien, C., John, R., Chen., J., The Effect of Algal Blooms on Carbon Emissions in Western Lake Erie: An Integration of Remote Sensing and Eddy Covariance Measurements, 2017, Remote Sensing, 9(1), 44; doi:10.3390/rs9010044

Shao, C., Chen, J., Stepien, C.A., Chu, H.*, Bridgeman, T., Czajkowski, K., Becker, R.H., Ouyang, Z.*, John, R., 2015, Diurnal to annual carbon, latent and sensible heat fluxes in a Laurentian Great Lake: A case study in western Lake Erie, JGR Biogeosciences, doi:10.1002/2015JG003025

Cousino, L.K.**, Becker, R.H., Zmijewski, K.A.*, Modeling the Effects of Climate Change on Water, Sediment, and Nutrient Yields from the Maumee River Watershed, 2015, Journal of Hydrology Regional Studies, doi:10.1016/j.ejrh.2015.06.017

Hanes, B.*, Fisher, T.G., Becker, R.H., Martin Hayden, J., 2014, Elucidating paleo dune activity and timing from wetlands in the lee of coastal sand dunes, Grand Mere Lakes, Michigan USA, Geological Society of America Special Papers 508, SPE508-08), doi:10.1130/2014.2508(08)​

Ouyang, Z.*, Chen, J., Becker, R.H., Chu, H.*, Chao, C., 2014, Disentangling the confounding effects of PAR and air temperature on net ecosystem exchange in time and scale, Ecological Complexity, v19,pp 46-58, doi:10.1016/j.ecocom.2014.04.005

Chu, H.*, Chen, J., Gottgens, J.F., Ouyang Z.*, 2014, John, R., Czajkowski, K., Becker, R.H., Net ecosystem exchanges of CH4 and CO2 at a temperate freshwater marsh and a cropland, Journal of Geophysical Research-Biogeosciences, doi:10.1002/2013JG002520

Becker, R.H., 2014, The Stalled Recovery of the Iraqi Marshes, Remote Sensing, v6, no2, pp1260-1274, doi:10.3390/rs6021260

Zmijewski, K.*, Becker, R.H., Estimating the effects of anthropogenic and climate change on water balance in the Aral Sea watershed using GRACE: 2003-2012, Earth Interactions, v18, no3, doi:10.1175/2013EI000537.1

Ouyang Z.*, Becker, R.H., Shaver, W.**, Chen, J., 2014, Evaluating the Sensitivity of Wetlands to Climate Change with Remote Sensing Techniques, Hydrological Processes, v28, no4, 1703-1712, doi:10.1002/hyp.9685



  • EEES 1050 ENVIRONMENTAL HAZARDS [3 hours] Introduction to hazardous geological processes and materials: volcanic eruptions, earthquakes, floods, ground subsidence and collapse, landslides, coastal flooding and erosion and others. Causes and risk mitigation are discussed. [Fall, Spring, Summer]. Natural Sciences core course. (Spring and Summer are offered in a Distance Learning format.)

  • EEES 2100 FUNDAMENTALS OF GEOLOGY [4 hours] Consideration of earth materials and the dynamic external and internal processes active on earth; the physical and biological history of the earth. [Fall, Spring] Prerequisite: CHEM 1090 or 1230.




Last Updated: 4/16/21