Remote sensing is the measurement of object properties on Earth’s surface using data acquired from aircraft and satellites. It attempts to measure something at a distance, rather than in situ, and, for this research’s purposes, displays those measurements over a two-dimensional spatial grid, i.e. images. Remote-sensing systems, particularly those deployed on satellites, provide a repetitive and consistent view of Earth facilitating the ability to monitor the earth system and the effects of human activities on Earth. There are many electromagnetic (EM) band-length ranges Earth’s atmosphere absorbs. The EM band ranges transmittable through Earth’s atmosphere are sometimes referred to as atmospheric windows. 

The human eye only detects, viz. the reflective solar radiance humans actually see, that part of the EM scale in the band length range 0.4 – 0.7 µm. But remote sensing technology allows for the detection of other reflective and radiant (e.g. thermal) energy band-length ranges that reach or are emitted by Earth’s surface, and even some Earth’s atmosphere reflects, e.g. the EM reflective qualities of clouds. Hence, for viewing purposes red, green, and blue (RGB) false color assignments are used to express the reflective qualities of objects in these EM band-length groups, and the combination and mixing of these false color assignments express the true physical reflective qualities of all objects present in an image. 

The primary benefit of Geographic Information Systems (GIS) is the ability to interrelate spatially multiple types of information assembled from a range of sources. These data do not necessarily have to be visual. Shape files are helpful for interpolating and visualizing many other types of data, e.g. demographic data. Many study and research models rely on the ability to analyze and extract information from images by using a variety of computer available research tools and then express these findings as part of a project with images in a variety of layers and scenes.