Markus Eckerstorfer

Markus Eckerstorfer

Senior Researcher
Mobile: +47 926 78 797
Office Address: Sykehusvn 21, 9019 Tromsø, Norway

I am a snow avalanche scientist with a MSc-degree in Cartography and Geoinformation from University of Vienna and a PhD-degree in Physical Geography from the University Centre in Svalbard and the University of Oslo. In my scientific career so far, I have worked on several aspects of snow avalanche forecasting, contributing to reducing uncertainty in the forecasting process.

In my MSc-thesis I worked on the cartographic visualization of the snow avalanche danger scale. During my PhD, I conducted a field-based monitoring program on snow avalanche activity around Longyearbyen, Svalbard, with special emphasis on snow cornice dynamics.

Since 2013, I am working at NORCE (former Norut) in the Earth Observation Group. Together with my colleagues, we have developed a processing system that automatically detects snow avalanches in large regions over entire winters using radar images provided by the Sentinel-1 constellation. Our processing system will be used by the Norwegian Water and Energy Resource Directorate (NVE) in their daily snow avalanche forecasting from winter 2019/2020. Spatio-temporal complete data on snow avalanche activity is critical information for NVE when assessing current and future snow avalanche risk.

The generic nature of our processing system allows us to detect snow avalanche activity worldwide and we are currently developing such a global service for the European Space Agency.