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Disruptive Geospatial Technologies Laboratory (DiGTL)

Abstract Image

Our Mission - DiGTL is committed to pioneering and exploring innovative technology-driven methods for perceiving, comprehending, and engaging with both our natural and human-created surroundings. We envision a world where cutting-edge technology not only deepens our understanding of the environment but also forges stronger connections between individuals and the landscapes that surround them.


Our Projects

As a laboratory operating within the Center for Geospatial Research (CGR), we harness the innovative potential of our faculty and students to create and integrate tools across a range of initiatives. Our work has strong teaching/learning components and involves hands-on training of undergraduate and graduate students from multiple departments at the University of Georgia. Our projects have had a widespread impact, reaching thousands of individuals within the UGA/Athens community and beyond through classes, demonstrations, presentations, and events. Some of our ongoing projects comprise: 

> High throughput phenotyping in agriculture: use of drones and remote sensors (RGB, multispectral, LiDAR, hyperspectral) for biometric extraction in support of plant status evaluation, yield estimation and plant breeding.

 > Basic and applied research in remote sensing: target characterization and evaluation of spectral properties of targets using multi-angle view (Droniometer experiment) and profiling of lower atmosphere for urban heat island studies. 

> Geospatial Artificial Intelligence: implementation of a GeoAI solution and solution integration into a large unmanned vehicle for near-real time onboard processing and decision making during image collections in the field.

 > Cobb’s World: a technology-based cultural and historical heritage preservation project. Creation of photorealistic historical landscapes using drones and ground-based strategies for 3D modeling and the generation of digital twins representing buildings and surrounding landscapes in the 1850s.

 > Augmented Reality/Virtual Reality in the Geosciences: strategies for geovisualization of objects and phenomena using AR/VR. Includes the integration of GIS and game engines in the creation of AR/VR tools for mobile platforms and the creation of experiences for an augmented reality sandbox (e.g., agent-based, erosion, fire and sea level rise modeling). Supports immersive, experiential teaching/learning and research.

 > Color Vision Deficiency in the Geosciences: AR implementation for mobile devices that simulates CVD in support of inclusive data analysis and communication in the Geosciences.


In the News

Project Release: 1850 Athens Properties in 3D 
November 19, 2023
 Athens-Clarke County Library

Related Courses

DiGTL has served as a guest lecturer for courses encompassing diverse fields and multiple units at UGA, including Geography, Geology, CED, Psychology, History, Anthropology, the First Year Odyssey Seminar Program, and the Institute for Artificial Intelligence. 
Courses taught by the lab include: GEOG8390, GEOG 6920, GEOG8590, CSCI4950, and HIST7500.

Contact Information 

Disruptive Geospatial Technologies Lab (
Director: Dr. Sergio Bernardes (


Support us

We appreciate your financial support. Your gift is important to us and helps support critical opportunities for students and faculty alike, including lectures, travel support, and any number of educational events that augment the classroom experience. Click here to learn more about how to help us grow.

Every dollar given has a direct impact upon our students and faculty.