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United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service

Kelly R Thorp

Agricultural Engineer


Water Management and Conservation Research Unit

USDA-ARS U.S. Arid-Land Agricultural Research Center


Kelly Thorp
Agricultural Engineer

Arid-Land Agricultural Research Center

21881 North Cardon Lane

Maricopa, Arizona 85138

520-316-6330 (FAX)





B.S. Agricultural Engineering, University of Illinois at Urbana/Champaign, 2000

M.S. Agricultural Engineering, University of Illinois at Urbana/Champaign, 2002

Ph.D. Agricultural Engineering, Iowa State University, 2006



My research focuses primarily on the development and application of informational technologies for understanding agricultural system processes and improving management of water and nutrients for crop production.  Developing strategies for remote sensing data collection and algorithms for remote sensing image processing are key components of my research.  Special emphasis is on hyperspectral remote sensing of crop canopies in the visible, near-infrared, and short-wave infrared wavebands.  I also develop, evaluate, and apply cropping system simulation models, including the ARS Root Zone Water Quality Model (RZWQM) and the Cropping System Model (CSM) as distributed with the Decision Support System for Agrotechnology Transfer (DSSAT).  Efforts are currently focused on the development of data assimilation, parameter estimation, and inverse modeling techniques for merging remote sensing data into the simulations of cropping system models.  Application areas for these informational technologies include crop water and nitrogen status assessment, precision agriculture, management of nitrogen fertilizer, irrigation and drainage water management, field-based plant phenomics, and development of new bioenergy crops.


Research Projects:

Remote Sensing for Crop and Water Management in Irrigated Agriculture


Last Modified: 8/16/2016
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