Ecosystem Function from Earth Observation

Dr. Gregory Duveiller


Carbon, water and energy fluxes between the land and the atmosphere strongly depend on the functioning of ecosystems. Yet, understanding, characterizing and predicting the role of land on climate is intrinsically challenging, not only because of the complexity of the processes involved, but also by the large heterogeneity of the land surface itself. This spatial variation results from local climatological, topographical and edaphic conditions, but also by the great diversity in vascular plants, in how they are organized in distinctive ecosystems, in how these are structured within the landscape, and how these landscapes have been shaped and altered by humans for millennia.

The Ecosystem Function from Earth Observation group aims at rethinking how we quantify and map ecosystem functional properties from space by synergistically exploiting the increasing diversity of complementary satellite data streams that are currently available. This involves redesigning how we combine these signals together by integrating process-based understanding and data-driven approaches. A key focus is on exploring the complexity and diversity of terrestrial ecosystems, and how their specific functional properties affect land-atmosphere interactions. Topics explored under this umbrella include: (i) improving estimations of carbon, water and energy fluxes; (ii) studying the role of biodiversity (specifically functional diversity) to improve ecosystem resilience; (iii) exploring the biophysical effects of land use and land management on climate.


Gregory Duveiller
Project Leader
  • +49 3641 57-6281
MPG PublicationsGoogle Scholar ORCID
Johannes Gensheimer
Doctoral Researcher
  • +49 3641 57-6239
MPG Publications
Ulisse Gomarasca
Doctoral Researcher
  • +49 3641 57-6237
Daniel Pabon Moreno
Doctoral Researcher
  • +49 3641 57-6243
MPG Publications


Open Earth Monitor
The mission of Open-Earth-Monitor is to accelerate uptake of environmental information to guide current and future users in research, decision-making and citizens toward the most sustainable solutions. more
Integrated Greenhouse Gas Monitoring System
The Integrated Greenhouse Gas Monitoring System – or in German: Integriertes Treibhausgas-Monitoringsystem (ITMS) – will enable Germany to monitor operationally the sources and sinks of the three most important long-lived greenhouse gases CO2, CH4, N2O with the help of independent measurements. more
The objective of the Sen4GPP project is to improve our knowledge on the spatio-temporal variations of GPP associated with terrestrial ecosystems by a synergistic exploitation of the complementary information (Land Surface Temperature – LST, Solar-Induced Fluorescence – SIF, Fraction of Absorbed Photosynthetically Active Radiation – FAPAR and land cover) provided by the Sentinel missions (Sentinel-2, Sentinel-3 and Sentinel-5P) at multiple spatial and temporal resolutions, as well as other Earth Observation and in situ data. more


Publications from Gregory Duveiller

Journal Article (5)

Journal Article
Ceccherini, G.; Duveiller, G.; Grassi, G.; Lemoine, G.; Avitabile, V.; Pilli, R.; Cescatti, A.: Potentials and limitations of NFIs and remote sensing in the assessment of harvest rates: a reply to Breidenbach et al. Annals of Forest Science 79, 31 (2022)
Journal Article
Li, W.; Migliavacca, M.; Forkel, M.; Denissen, J. M. C.; Reichstein, M.; Yang, H.; Duveiller, G.; Weber, U.; Orth, R.: Widespread increasing vegetation sensitivity to soil moisture. Nature Communications 13, 3959 (2022)
Journal Article
Meier, R.; Davin, E. L.; Bonan, G. B.; Lawrence, D. M.; Hu, X.; Duveiller, G.; Prigent, C.; Seneviratne, S. I.: Impacts of a revised surface roughness parameterization in the Community Land model 5.1. Geoscientific Model Development 15 (6), pp. 2365 - 2393 (2022)
Journal Article
Alkama, R.; Forzieri, G.; Duveiller, G.; Grassi, G.; Liang, S.; Cescatti, A.: Vegetation-based climate mitigation in a warmer and greener World. Nature Communications 13, 606 (2022)
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Publications from Johnannes Gensheimer

Journal Article (1)

Journal Article
Gensheimer, J.; Turner, A. J.; Köhler, P.; Frankenberg, C.; Chen, J.: A convolutional neural network for spatial downscaling of satellite-based solar-induced chlorophyll fluorescence (SIFnet). Biogeosciences 19 (6), pp. 1777 - 1793 (2022)

Preprint (1)

Zhao, X.; Chen, J.; Marshall, J.; Galkowski, M.; Hachinger, S.; Dietrich, F.; Shekhar, A.; Gensheimer, J.; Wenzel, A.; Gerbig, C.: Understanding greenhouse gas (GHG) column concentrations in Munich using WRF. (2022)

Publications from Ulisee Gomarasca

Migliavacca, M., Musavi, T., Mahecha, M.D. et al.
The three major axes of terrestrial ecosystem function
Nature 598, 468–472 (2021).
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