UAF Alumna to Head Alaska Synthetic Aperture Radar Facility

Release Date: 
Tuesday, September 17, 2002

The Geophysical Institute at the University of Alaska Fairbanks (UAF) has appointed UAF alumna Nettie La Belle-Hamer as director of the Alaska Synthetic Aperture Radar (SAR) Facility. La Belle-Hamer earned her Ph.D. and Master of Science degrees in space physics at UAF in 1994 and 1988, respectively.

The Alaska SAR Facility (ASF), housed in the Geophysical Institute, is one of eight NASAsponsored SAR data archiving centers in the nation and also serves as a NASA ground network station. The facility receives, archives, processes and distributes data from several international polar-orbiting satellites. SAR images are used for a variety of applications including environmental monitoring, earth-resource mapping and volcano hazard mitigation.

La Belle-Hamer served as ASF's science center manager prior to her appointment. She managed several major science projects, including the data-acquisition and processing portion of the RADARSAT Antarctic Mapping Mission and implementation of NASA's RADARSAT Geophysical Processor System in Alaska.

In light of NASA's recent budget cuts, La Belle-Hamer hopes to diversify ASF's funding sources. "There are a number of funding opportunities with U.S. and foreign flight agencies as well as opportunities for partnering with other data centers and universities," La Belle-Hamer said.

ASF plays a dynamic role in the Geophysical Institute’s scientific mission, and serves as a vital data link to the International Arctic Research Center and the Arctic Region Supercomputing Center, both at UAF.

A full-color photo of La Belle-Hamer is available upon request. Call Vicki Daniels at (907) 474-5823 for details.

Nettie La Belle-Hamer, Alaska SAR Facility Director: (907) 474-6167
Vicki Daniels, Geophysical Institute Public Relations Specialist: (907) 474-5823