USDA Forest Service

RMRS Black and White Graphic ElementForest Inventory & Analysis


Forest Inventory & Analysis
507 25th Street
Ogden, UT 84401-2450

(801) 625-5407

United States Department of Agriculture Forest Service.

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Ray Czaplewski - Emeritus Scientist

Ray Czaplewski

Interior West Forest Inventory and Analysis

Forestry Sciences Laboratory
507 25th Street
Ogden, UT 84401

(970) 218-5907




  • Ph.D Quantitative Range Science, Colorado State University, 1974-1986
  • M.S. Systems Ecology, University of Wyoming, 1970-1972
  • B.S. Biology, Northwestern University, 1966 - 1970
Current Research
I develop data-synthesis methods for the USDA National Forest Inventory and Analysis (FIA) Program. These multivariate statistical methods combine time-series of sample-surveys with field plots (annual FIA panels) and samples of high-resolution aerial imagery (NPIP); full-coverage satellite data (Landsat, MODIS); and simple deterministic demographic-models. These methods are based on the digital Kalman filter, which has a rich history in navigation, econometrics, and weather forecasting. I develop statistical software that implements these methods with numerically-robust algorithms. These multivariate techniques reliably accommodate thousands of estimates (statistical tables) across a small number of annual time-steps.


Past Research
I developed methods in mathematical statistics that combine multivariate time-series of sample-survey estimates from field plots, remotely sensed data (full-coverage Landsat), and predictions from deterministic (demographic) models. These same methods served as basis for multivariate estimates of accuracy assessment statistics ("error matrix"), which help evaluate success of thematic maps developed with remotely sensed data. I helped design monitoring systems for global deforestation, regional mitigation monitoring (President's Northwest Forest Plan), and wildlife populations. I developed stem profiles models used for timber-sale appraisals, and successfully defended them during adjudication.


Why This Research is Important
My research helps improve relevancy, timeliness and efficiency of the Forest Inventory and Analysis (FIA) program as articulated its 2007 Strategic Plan. It has played an important role in successful monitoring of tropical deforestation at the global scale by the Food and Agricultural Organization of the United Nations. It has served as the first successful application of stem-profile models in multi-product timber-sales by the US Forest Service. It has advanced the state-of-the-art in assessments of classification accuracy of land-cover thematic maps produced with remotely sensed data.


Most Significant Publications

USDA Forest Service - RMRS - Forest Inventory & Analysis
Last Modified: Friday, 26 September 2014 at 08:27:38 CDT

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