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Personal profile

Short bio

Dr. Matti Mõttus is a Principal Scientist at VTT in Remote Sensing team. His areas of expertise include hyperspectral remote sensing, and mapping of vegetation structure and functioning using remote sensing data.  He is a member of the Mission Advisory Group for ESA’s FLEX satellite and the EnMAP hyperspectral imager by the German DLR, and an official collaborator on EPIC DSCOVR vegetation products developed by Boston University (prof. Yuri Knyazikhin). Dr. Mõttus has acted as the Principal Investigator (PI) of four research projects funded by Academy of Finland (total budget 5 M€), including an ongoing consortium project for AI application in forest mapping, and participated in numerous other national and international projects related to remote sensing. He was also the PI of the Forest Digital Twin Earth Precursor project, funded by the European Space Agency.

Research interests

Information on my research projects, datasets and computer code can be found at the dedicated GitHub page.

My research interests include

  • Remote sensing of vegetation structure and functioning
  • Radiative transfer in vegetation canopies and forest reflectance models
  • Combining Artificial Intelligence (AI) and physical models 
  • Hyperspectral remote sensing
  • Photosynthetically Active Radiation (PAR) measurement and modeling
  • Optical field spectroscopy
  • Quantification of vegetation structure
  • Theory of spectral invariants in radiative transfer theory 
  • Photochemical Reflectance Index (PRI) and sun-induced chlorophyll fluorescence

Expertise related to UN Sustainable Development Goals

In 2015, UN member states agreed to 17 global Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) to end poverty, protect the planet and ensure prosperity for all. This person’s work contributes towards the following SDG(s):

  • SDG 2 - Zero Hunger
  • SDG 7 - Affordable and Clean Energy
  • SDG 12 - Responsible Consumption and Production
  • SDG 13 - Climate Action
  • SDG 15 - Life on Land

Education/Academic qualification

Natural sciences, Doctorate, Shortwave solar radiation field in willow coppice, University of Tartu

1 Sept 20001 Dec 2004

Award Date: 1 Dec 2004

External positions

Academy of Finland Research Fellow, VTT Technical Research Centre of Finland

1 Sept 201631 Dec 2018

Academy of Finland Research Fellow, University of Helsinki, Department of Geosciences and Geography

1 Sept 201331 Aug 2016

Postdoctoral researcher, University of Helsinki, Department of Geosciences and Geography

1 Jan 201031 Aug 2013

title of docent, University of Helsinki

12 Nov 2009 → …

Postdoctoral researcher, University of Helsinki, Department of Forest Resource Management

1 Jul 200931 Dec 2009

postdoctoral researcher, short contracts, total 6 months, University of Helsinki, Department of Forest Research Management

1 Jan 200731 Dec 2008

Senior Research Associate, Tartu Observatory

1 Aug 200630 Jun 2009

Postdoctoral researcher, University of Helsinki, Department of Forest Ecology

1 Jun 200531 Jul 2006

Research fellow, Tartu Observatory

1 Jun 200431 May 2005


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