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Research Group: Geospatial Engineering

Research Group: Geospatial Engineering

Cutting edge research and innovative teaching across science and engineering.

We carry out internationally-leading research and teaching on all aspects of:

  • geospatial measurement science
  • Earth observation
  • location-based data science
  • spatial analytics
  • geospatial modelling
Geospatial Engineering student

Our work has many applications across the realms of science and engineering.

We have our origins in the first Joint Honours degrees in Surveying, introduced by Newcastle University in 1967. We operated for many years under the names of Surveying and later Geomatics. In 2019, we rebranded as Geospatial Engineering to reflect our new place within the School of Engineering.

Our diverse research spans from the wilds of the Antarctic and oceans to the bustle of modern cities. It informs our highly-rated specialist BEng, BSc, MSci, MRes and PhD degree programmes. We educate the next generation of geospatial professionals. We enjoy excellent collaborative links with industry in both research and teaching. Our graduates are highly sought by employers.

As part of UKCRIC, we lead the Newcastle Urban Observatory - the largest set of publicly-available real-time urban data in the UK. We are also part of:


Our research spans a very broad spectrum of cutting-edge technology development and applications. It has societal impact across science and engineering.

It is characterised by three interwoven strands.

Geospatial Data Analytics and Modelling

We develop the data science and visualisation tools behind all analysis of location-based data.

Our research is both developmental and applied. We focus on the acquisition, analysis, simulation and visualisation of complex geospatial systems. Our research leads to better informed decision making and policy.

We have particular strengths in:

  • environmental sensor networks and Spatial Internet of Things (IoT)
  • large scale geospatial database architectures
  • real-time geospatial data analytics and multi-scale spatial modelling
  • visualisation of dynamic spatial datasets


Geodesy is the precise measurement and analysis of:

  • the Earth’s changing shape and gravity field
  • large-scale natural features and infrastructure

We refine the methods and application of high-precision GNSS methodologies. This provides us with a better understanding of the dynamics of the changing environment around us.


The Newcastle Earth Observation Laboratory develops innovative techniques in data capture. We use photogrammetry, laser scanning, synthetic aperture radar, and satellite image analysis

We investigate the methodological development and application of remote sensing, photogrammetry and laser scanning.

Earth Observation research focuses on data about the Earth’s systems. We use this data to assess the status of, or track changes in, the natural and built environments.

We use the latest remote sensing technologies, such as:

  • satellite imaging
  • airborne digital sensors
  • unmanned aerial vehicles
  • mobile mapping systems
  • advanced ground-based instrumentation

These technologies provide detailed geometric and radiometric data at many spatio-temporal scales. Thus, we have unique insights into the Earth’s physical, biological and engineered systems.

Our activities include:

  • sensor calibration and validation
  • advanced approaches to measurement and monitoring
  • novel algorithms for integrating multi-sensor data and assessment of new technologies

We apply our research in many fields, including:

  • civil engineering
  • precision agriculture
  • natural resource management
  • cultural heritage
  • geohazards

Doctoral training

A key part of our PhD research training programme is our leadership of the EPSRC Centre for Doctoral Training in Geospatial Systems. We are also part of the NERC IAPETUS and ONEPlanet doctoral training partnerships.


Taught Programmes

Our Geospatial Engineering Undergraduate Programmes equip students with the professional skills they need to succeed while exposing them to real-world experiences.

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