GEDI makes detailed and systematic ecosystem structure measurements across Earth's most diverse forest biomes.

Ecosystem structure, as it relates to habitat, is characterized by vegetation height, cover, and vertical distribution of canopy material. It is the result of interactions between plant diversity, disturbance, environmental gradients (e.g. temperature, precipitation, and topography) and animal activity (e.g. browsing, grazing, and seed dispersal). Our understanding of how different elements of habitat structure vary across the Earth has come from sparsely distributed field plots and limited sampling from airborne and space-based lidar. GEDI fills significant data and knowledge gaps with its dense spatial sampling, allowing for quantification of habitat structure across tropical, sub-tropical, and temperate ecosystems. GEDI enables detailed characterization of how canopy height and structure vary across major forest ecosystems and how these are related to patterns of plant diversity and animal habitat use. Fusion with optical and radar satellite systems further provide wall-to-wall mapping of habitat structure, vegetation condition, and community characteristics at high three-dimensional resolution.

Illustration of a multi-layered forest canopy
Simple Share Buttons