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Ramakrishna Nemani
Senior Earth Scientist

Ecological Forecasting Laboratory
NASA Ames Research Center
MS 242-4, Moffett Field, CA 94035
Phone: (650) 604-6185
Email: rama dot nemani at nasa dot gov

Rama Nemani Image      

2009 – Present: Principal scientist, NASA Earth Exchange (NEX)
2003 – Present: Director of Ecological Forecasting Laboratory, NASA
1997 – 2002: Associate Research Professor, University of Montana
1991 – 1996: Assistant Research Professor, University of Montana
1989 - 1991: Post-doctoral fellow, University of Toronto

Research interests:

Ecological forecasting
Developing tools and techniques for producing ecological nowcasts and forecasts using satellite and climate data through a modeling framework called the Terrestrial Observation and Prediction System (TOPS,

Collaborative computing in the Earth sciences
Building the NASA Earth Exchange (, a collaborative computing platform for providing direct access to data, models, analysis tools, and scientific results through a supercomputing platfors that fosters knowledge sharing, collaboration, and innovation.


2010 – 2014: Science Team, NPOES Preparatory Project (NPP).
2006 - 2012: Science Team, Landsat Data Continuity Mission (LDCM)
1993 - 2003: Science Team, EOS/MODIS


Ph.D., 1987, University of Montana, Missoula, MT, USA, Remote Sensing/Forestry
M.S., 1982, Punjab Agricultural University, Ludhiana, India, Applied Meteorology
B.S., 1979, Andhra Pradesh Agricultural University, Bapatla, India. Agronomy

Awards and Honors:

NASA Outstanding Leadership Medal, 2012
NASA Exceptional Achievement Medal, 2011
NASA Group Achievement Awards for TOPS (2011), NEX (2012) and OpenNEX (2013)
NASA Exceptional Scientific Achievement Medal, 2008
NASA Ames Honor Award, Scientist of the year, 2006

Citation Record (Google Scholar):

Total Publications 190
Citations 28210
h-index 75

Significant publications:

Nemani, R., P. Votava, A. Michaelis, F. Melton and C. Milesi. 2011. Collaborative supercomputing for global change science. Transactions of Eos, 92, No. 13, 109-110.

Nemani, R., H. Hashimoto, P. Votava, F. Melton, W. Wang, A. Michaelis, L, Mutch, C. Milesi, S. Hiatt, M. White. 2009. Monitoring and forecasting ecosystem dynamics using the terrestrial observation and prediction system (TOPS), Remote Sensing of Environment, 113, 1497-1509.

Running, S.W., Nemani, R. R., Heinsch, F. A., Zhao, M., Reeves, M., Jolly, M. (2004). A continuous Satellite-derived measure of global terrestrial primary productivity. Bioscience, 54(6): 547-560.

Jolly, M., J.M. Graham, A. Michaelis, R. Nemani and S.W. Running. 2004. A flexible, integrated system for generating meteorological surfaces derived from point sources across multiple geographic scales. Environmental modeling & software, 15: 112-121.

Nemani, R.R., C.D. Keeling, H. Hashimoto, M. Jolly, S.W. Running, S.C. Piper, C.J. Tucker and R. Myneni. 2003. Climate driven increases in terrestrial net primary production from 1982 to 1999. Science 300, 1560-1563.

Milesi, C., C. Elvidge, R.R. Nemani and S.W. Running. 2002. Impact of urban development on net primary production in the southeastern United States. Remote Sensing of Environment, 86 (3): 401-410.

Nemani, R.R., M.A. White, P.E.Thornton, K. Nishida, S. Reddy, J.Jenkins and S.W.Running. 2001. Recent trends in hydrologic cycle have enhanced terrestrial carbon sink in the US. Geophysical Research Letters, 29(10), 2002GL14867

Nemani, R.R., M.A. White, D.R. Cayan, G.V. Jones, S.W. Running, J.C. Coughlan and D.L. Peterson. 2001. Asymmetric warming along coastal California and its impact on the premium wine industry. Climate Research, 19: 25-34.

White, M.A., P.E. Thornton, S.W. Running and R.R. Nemani. 2000. Parameterization and sensitivity analysis of the BIOME-BGC terrestrial ecosystem model: net primary production controls. Earth Interactions, 4: 1-85.

Myneni, R.B., C.D. Keeling, C.J. Tucker, G. Asrar and R.R. Nemani. 1997. Increase plant growth in the northern high-latitudes from 1981-1991. Nature (April 17), 386: 698-702.

Myneni, R.B., Nemani, R.R., and Running, S.W. (1997). Algorithm for the estimation of global land cover, LAI, and FPAR based on radiative transfer models. IEEE Trans. Geoscience and Remote Sensing, 35: 1380-1392.

Nemani, R.R., S.W. Running, L.L. Pierce and S.N. Goward. 1993. Developing satellite derived estimate of surface moisture status. Journal of Applied Meteorology, 32: 548-557.

Band, L.E., D.L. Peterson, S.W. Running, J.C. Coughlan, R. Lammers, J.Dungan, and R.R. Nemani. 1991. Forest ecosystem processes at the watershed scale: Basis for distributed simulation. Ecological Modeling, 56: 171-196.

Nemani, R.R., and S.W. Running. 1989. Testing a theoretical climate-soil-leaf area hydrologic equilibrium of forests using satellite data and ecosystem simulation. Agricultural and Forest Meteorology, 44: 245-260.

Running, S.W., R.R. Nemani and R.D. Hungerford. 1987. Extrapolation of synoptic meteorological data in mountainous terrain and its use for simulating forest evapotranspiration and photosynthesis. Canadian Journal of Forest Research, 17: 472-483.