Purdue Libraries and School of Information Studies News

A Resounding Success: Highlights from Purdue GIS Day: Open Science from Outer Space

November 13th, 2023

Dr. Qiusheng Wu, associate professor in the Department of Geography and Sustainability at the University of Tennessee, Knoxville, delivered an engaging keynote and led a workshop during Purdue GIS Day.

This year’s Purdue GIS Day, held at Purdue University under the theme “Open Science from Outer Space”, was nothing short of a triumph, bringing together academics, industry professionals, and students in a day filled with insightful presentations, an engaging workshop, and networking opportunities. The event, hosted by Dr. Gang Shao, assistant professor and data science specialist, showcased the latest advancements in geospatial analysis, and their applications across various scientific disciplines. The day kicked off with a series of lightning talks presented by undergraduate and graduate students that ignited the audience’s curiosity. These brief but impactful talks on diverse topics demonstrated the depth of our student body’s research and innovation in geospatial fields.

We were honored to have a keynote and workshop presented by Dr. Qiusheng Wu, associate professor in the Department of Geography and Sustainability at the University of Tennessee, Knoxville. Dr. Wu captivated the audience with insights into the power of cloud computing and his recently developed open access applications available to perform geospatial analysis. His beginner’s guide helped attendees understand the potential of these technologies, making complex concepts accessible and emphasizing the importance of making GIS technologies freely and widely accessible to research communities. His afternoon hands-on workshop session on automated image segmentation with segment-geospatial allowed participants to delve into the practical aspects of geospatial analysis, enhancing their skills.

A showcase of Purdue excellence followed with a series of research presentations by our Boilermaker community. From the integration of geospatial data with science to satellite-based monitoring of heritage sites, each presenter provided a glimpse into cutting-edge research. The audience was treated to the latest advancements in fields such as civil engineering, anthropology, and data science. 

We were also honored to hear from industry partners during a panel discussion as well as a number of presentations that shed light on the practical applications of geospatial technologies, and provided a bridge between academia and industry. From live data collection with ArcGIS Online to the use of GIS in social and historical data, the speakers highlighted the relevance of these tools in real-world scenarios.

The day concluded with the recognition of the four most outstanding student contributions that were each awarded a certificate as well as a $100 reward for their unique contributions to research and this event. Sarah Brenneman, a statistics major, received the award for the best student lightning talk presented by an undergraduate student for her talk titled “Connecting Communities through Parks Using ArcGIS Experience Builder”. Agronomy student Ana Grabriela Morales-Ona was awarded in the category of student lightning talk presented by a graduate student for her presentation on the “Integration of Satellite and UAV Imagery for Assessing Corn Nitrogen Status at Early Vegetative Growth Stages.” Dutch Byrd, a student in the School of Aviation and Transportation Technology, was the recipient of the award for best poster presentation by an undergraduate student for his poster analyzing “Optimizing Photovoltaic (PV) Cell Inspection Parameters for Autonomous Drone Flights”. And lastly, Christopher Ardohain’s poster presentation on “Invasive Species Identification from High-resolution 4-band Multispectral Imagery” was the best submission by a Purdue graduate student. Congratulations to all our winners for their outstanding achievements.