UCL Dept. of Space & Climate Physics | Mullard Space Science Laboratory
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Prof. Jan-Peter Muller

Research Interests

Photo of Jan-Peter Muller
  • Imaging science
    • new sensing techniques (e.g. fluorescence spectroscopy)
    • uncooled thermal IR
    • sub-surface imaging systems from space
  • 3D extraction
    • multi-angle stereo (e.g. MISR, MISRlite)
    • imaging lidar
    • InSAR and SAR phase correlation
  • Machine vision and 3D Animated visualisation
    • automated landscape feature extraction (e.g. trees, buildings on earth; craters on Mars)
    • orbital-rover data fusion
    • web-GIS for data dissemination and visualisation
    • visualisation of global change (link to Global Change Video)
  • Global climate from EO
    • long-term calibration of EO instruments (e.g. TRUTHS)
    • validation methods
    • global land surface albedo
    • global cloud-top heights and winds
    • global aerosol source-to-sink (e.g. volcanic ash, smoke, pollution)
    • PM2.5/PM1 mapping in urban canyons from space
    • Standing biomass
    • Solar-planetary weather teleconnections
  • Planetary science
    • life detection on other planets (in our solar system & beyond)
    • comparative morphology for understanding surface processes using 3D terrain
    • highly turbulent flow and how Giant Planets' banded structure and long-lived storms can persist


Year of completion
B.Sc. Physics University of Sheffield 1976
M.Sc. D.I.C. Atmospheric Physics & Dynamics Imperial College 1977
Ph.D. Planetary Meteorology/Astronomy Department of Physics and Astronomy, University College London 1982

Professional History

  • Professor of Image Understanding and Remote Sensing

  • 1991 - Present
    Department of Space and Climate Physics, University College London
  • 2006 - Present
    Conducting research on image understanding, new sensor development and remote sensing and lecturing courses in "Global Monitoring of Environment and Security" and "Image Understanding" in M.Sc. Remote Sensing and "Space Instrumentation and Applications" on MSc Space Science. Head of Imaging Group

  • MODIS and MISR Team Member (NASA Earth Observing System Project) : 1989 - Present

  • HRSC Team Member (ESA Mars Express 2003 Project) : 1992 - Present

  • Stereo PanCam Team Member (ESA ExoMars 2016 Project) : 2006 - Present

  • Founder Director of Blue Sky Imaging Limited, UK : 1998 - Present

  • Chairman, STFC Aurora Advisory Committee : 2010-present
  • Member, STFC Astronomy Grants Panel : 2009-2011
  • Chairman, ISPRS WGV IV/6 on "Global DEM interoperability" : 2008-present
  • Point-of-Contact, GEO Task DA-09-03d on "Global DEM" : 2009-Present
  • Point-of-Contact, GEO Task DA-07-01 on "Global DEM inter-operability" : 2007-2008
  • Chairman, CEOS Working Group on Calibration/Validation Sub-group on "Terrain Mapping from Satellites" : 2001-Present
  • Director, UK NASA RPIF (Regional Planetary Imaging Facility) : 2007-Present
  • Co-Chairman, ISPRS IV/I WG on "Extraterrestrial Mapping" : 1996-2004

  • Professional Awards
    • SIGGRAPH '90 Scientific Visualisation for "3D Imaging from Space: The UK Perspective".
    • Winner of 1990 British Computer Society Technical Innovation Award for the "UCL 3D Image Maker".
    • Winner of 1993 British Multimedia Association Best European Multimedia Project for "Erd-sicht Global Change Videodisk".
    • Winner of British Multimedia Association Gold Award 1995 and Melia1995 Award (Cannes) Best Consumer Reference CD-ROM Project for "3D Atlas".
    • NASA Distinguished Group Achievement Award for the EOS MISR Instrument (2001)
    • NASA Distinguished Group Achievement Award for the EOS Aqua platform (2003)
    • ESA and National Remote Sensing Centre of China "Award of Excellence" for DRAGON project exploring the environmental impacts of the Three Gorges dam (2008)


Selected Academic Peer-Reviewed Papers (38 journal papers published since 01/00)

  • Balme, M., C. Gallagher, D. Page, J. Murray, and J. -P. Muller, 2009: Sorted stone circles in Elysium Planitia, Mars: Implications for recent martian climate. Icarus, 200, 30-38.
  • Balme, M., C. J. Gallagher, D. P. Page, J.B. Murray, J-P. Muller, and J-R. Kim (2009) The Western Elysium Planitia Paleolake. Chapter 10 of "Lakes on Mars" (N.A. Cabrol and A.F. Grin, Eds.), Elsevier (in press)
  • Chapman, L., J. E. Thorne, J.-P. Muller, and S. McMuldroch, 2007: Potential applications of thermal fisheye imagery in urban environments. IEEE Geoscience and remote Sensing Letters, 4, 56-59.
  • Denis, M. A., J.-P. Muller, and H. Mannstein, 2007: ATSR-2 camera models for the automated stereo photogrammetric retrieval of Cloud-Top heights. International Journal of Remote Sensing, 28, 1939-1955.
  • Diner, D. J., B. H. Braswell, R. Davies, N. Gobron, J. Hu, Y. Jin, R. A. Kahn, Y. Knyazikhin, N. Loeb, J. -P. Muller, A. W. Nolin, B. Pinty, C. B. Schaaf, G. Seitz, and J. Stroeve, 2005: The value of multiangle measurements for retrieving structurally and radiatively consistent properties of clouds, aerosols, and surfaces. Remote Sensing of Environment, 97, 495-518.
  • Doll, C. N. H., J.-P. Muller, and J. G. Morley, 2006: Mapping regional economic activity from night-time light satellite imagery Ecological Economics, 57, 75-92.
  • Hauber, E., S. van Gasselt, B. Ivanov, S. Werner, J. W. Head, G. Neukum, R. Jaumann, R. Greeley, K. L. Mitchell, J.-P. Muller, and the HRSC CoI team, 2005: Discovery of a flank caldera and very young glacial activity at Hecates Tholus, Mars. Nature, 434, 356-361.
  • Heipke, C., J. Oberst, J. Albertz, M. Attwenger, P. Dorninger, E. Dorrer, M. Ewe, S. Gehrke, K. Gwinner, H. Hirschmüller, J.-R. Kim, R. L. Kirk, H. Mayer, J.-P. Muller, R. Rengarajan, M. Rentsch, R. Schmidt, F. Scholten, J. Shan, M. Spiegel, M. Wählisch, G. Neukum, and t. H. C. team, 2007: Evaluating planetary digital terrain models-The HRSC DTM test. Planetary and Space Science, 55, 2173-2191.
  • Kim, J. R., J.-P. Muller, S. van Gasselt, J. G. Morley, and G. Neukum, 2005: Automated crater detection, a new tool for Mars cartography and chronology. Photogrammetric Engineering And Remote Sensing, 71, 1205-1217.
  • Kim, J.-R., J.-P. Muller (2009) Multi resolution topographic data extraction from Martian stereo imagery. Planetary and Space Science, 57, 2095-2112
  • Li, Z., J.-P. Muller, P. Cross, and E. Fielding, 2005: Interferometric synthetic aperture radar (InSAR) atmospheric correction: GPS, Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS), and InSAR integration. J. Geophys. Res., 110 (B3), B03410, doi:10.1029/2004JB003446.
  • Li, Z., E. J. Fielding, P. Cross, and J.-P. Muller, 2006: Interferometric synthetic aperture radar atmospheric correction: GPS topography-dependent turbulence model. J. Geophys. Res., 111, doi:10.1029/2005JB003711.
  • Li, Z., J.-P. Muller, P. Cross, A. P., J. Fischer, and R. Bennartz, 2006: Assessment of the potential of MERIS Near-infrared Water Vapour Products to Correct ASAR Interferometric Measurements. Int. J. Rem. Sens., 27, 349-365.
  • Li, Z. H., J.-P. Muller, and P. Cross, 2003: Comparison of precipitable water vapor derived from radiosonde, GPS, and Moderate-Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer measurements. Journal of Geophysical Research-Atmospheres, 108, art. no.-4651.
  • Muller, J.-P. and J. Fischer, 2007: The EU-CLOUDMAP Project on "Cirrus and contrail cloud-top maps from satellites for weaather forecasting climate change analysis". International Journal of Remote Sensing, 28, 1915-1919.
  • Muller, J.-P., M. A. Denis, R. Dundas, K. L. M. Mitchell, C. M. Naud, and H. M. Mannstein, 2007: Stereo cloud-top height and amount retrieval from ATSR2. International Journal of Remote Sensing, 28, 1921-1938.
  • Murray, J. B., J-P. Muller, G. Neukum, S.C. Werner, S. van Gasselt, E.Hauber, W. J. Markiewicz, J. W. Head, B. H. Foing, D. Page, K. L. Mitchell, G. Portyankina, and HC team, 2005: Evidence from the Mars Express High Resolution Stereo Camera for a frozen sea close to Mars' equator. Nature, 434, 352-356.
  • Murray, J., B. van Wyk de Vries, A. Marquez, D. Williams, P. Byrne, J.-P. Muller, and J.-R. Kim, 2009: Late-stage water eruptions from Ascraeus Mons volcano, Mars: Implications for its structure and history. Earth and Planetary Science Letters, doi:10.1016/j.epsl.2009.06.020.
  • Naud, C., J.-P. Muller, and P. de Valk, 2005: On the use of ICESAT-GLAS measurements for MODIS and SEVIRI cloud-top height accuracy assessment. Geophysical Research Letters, 32, L19815.
  • Naud, C., J.-P. Muller, and E. Clothiaux, 2006: Assessment of multispectral ATSR2 stereo cloud-top height retrievals. Remote Sensing of Environment, 104, 337-345.
  • Naud, C., J.-P. Muller, E. C. Slack, C. L. Wrench, and E. Clothiaux, 2005: Assessment of the Performance of the Chilbolton 3-GHz Advanced Meteorological Radar for Cloud-Top-Height Retrieval. J. Applied Meteorology, 44, 876-887.
  • Naud, C., K. L. Mitchell, J.-P. Muller, E. E. Clothiaux, P. Albert, R. Preusker, J. Fischer, and R. Hogan, 2007: Comparison between ATSR2 stereo, MOS O2-A band and ground-based derived cloud top Heights. International Journal of Remote Sensing, 28, 1969-1987.
  • Naud, C. M., J.-P. Muller, and E. E. Clothiaux, 2003: Comparison between active sensor and radiosonde cloud boundaries over the ARM Southern Great Plains site. Journal of Geophysical Research-Atmospheres, 108, art. no.-4140.
  • Naud, C. M., J.-P. Muller, E. E. Clothiaux, B. A. Baum, and W. P. Menzel, 2005: Intercomparison of multiple years of MODIS, MISR and radar cloud-top heights. Annales Geophysicae, 23, 2415-2424.
  • Rao, K. S., H. K. Al-Jassar, S. Phalke, Y. S. Rao, J.-P. Muller, and Z. Li, 2006: A study on the applicability of repeat-pass SAR interferometry for generating DEMs over several Indian test sites Int. J. Rem. Sens., 27, 595-616.
  • Storrie-Lombardi, M. C., J.-P. Muller, M. R. Fisk, A. D. Griffiths, and A. J. Coates, 2008: Potential for non-destructive astrochemistry by the ExoMars PanCam. Geophysical Research Letters, 35, L12201, doi:10.1029/2008GL034296.
  • Storrie-Lombardi, M., J.-P. Muller, M. R. Fisk, C. Cousins, B. Sattler, A. Griffiths, and A. Coates, 2009: Laser Induced Fluorescence Emission (L.I.F.E.): Searching for Mars Organics with a UV-Enhanced PanCam. Astrobiology, 9(10), 953-964
  • Warner, N., S. Gupta, J.-P. Muller, J. Kim, and S.-Y. Lin, 2009: A refined chronology of catastrophic outflow events in Ares Vallis, Mars. Earth and Planetary Science Letters, 288, 58-69.
  • Warner, N., S. Gupta, J.-R. Kim, J.-P. Muller, and S.-Y. Lin, 2010: Ancient equatorial thermokarst lakes in Ares Vallis as evidence for transient warm conditions on Mars. Geology, 38, 71-74.
  • Warner, N., S. Gupta, S.-Y. Lin, J.-R. Kim, J.-P. Muller, and J. Morley (2010), Late Noachian to Hesperian Climate Change on Mars: Evidence of Episodic Warming from Transient Crater Lakes near Ares Vallis, J. Geophys. Res., doi:10.1029/2009JE003522, in press.


  • Press release on "Spectacular Mars images reveal evidence of ancient lakes", 4.1.09 reported in the Times, Guardian, Daily Telegraph, New York Times, Los Angeles Times.


  • WMO-BIPM invited participant/speaker on "Measurement Challenges for Global Observation Systems for Climate Change Monitoring Traceability, Stability and Uncertainty", WMO HQ, Geneva, CH, 28.3-1.4.10

  • ESA-NRSCC invited speaker/chair for "DRAGON2 Mid-Term Review", Giulin city, P.R. China, 17-21.5.10

  • ESA "Living Earth" symposium, Bergen, Norway, 28.6-2.7.10

One fact about me is...

I enjoy cooking as a therapeutic exercise in the manner of Keith Floyd


  • CEOS
  • PanCam
  • HRSC
  • MISR


This page last modified 30 June, 2011 by imaging@mssl

New Group Members

The Imaging group would like to welcome the new Ph.D. students, Arrow Lee, Wil Poole and Daoxi Zhang to the team.

Arrow will be working on reconstructing density and motion of the Solar atmosphere and Coronal Mass Ejections from a series of stereoscopic images captured by NASAs STEREO mission.

Wil will be working on Mars surface roughness mapping using multi-resolution imaging and MOLA beam broadening, for landing site selection and the study of surface formation and evolution mechanisms.

Daoxi will be working on understanding the potential and limitations of solar-induced and laser-induced flourescent imaging of cyanobacteria in freshwater and seawater.

Mullard Space Science Laboratory - Holmbury St. Mary - Dorking - Surrey - RH5 6NT - Telephone: +44 (0)1483 204100 - Copyright © 1999-2005 UCL

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