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Alexander Axiotis

MSc Student Dr. Yuhong He, supervisor

Research and Professional Interests

My current research interests include environmental science, remote sensing, GIS, conservation and resource management. My Master’s research focuses on the use of airborne hyperspectral remote sensing to detect insect disturbances in forests. The Emerald Ash Borer (EAB) is an invasive insect that has caused widespread mortality of native ash species throughout North America.  My research combines very high spatial and spectral resolution imagery, geospatial data, biophysical and biochemical data, and quantifies changes in vegetation health related to insect infestations. I am working to improve remote sensing detection methods and models that can be used to accurately detect disturbances. This research will contribute to our knowledge of the effects of EAB on ash trees in local ecosystems and the development of cutting-edge monitoring practices.

My professional interests align with my research interests. I have worked at various Ministries including the Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources in Peterborough, ON, and the Ontario Ministry of the Environment in Toronto, ON, where I was involved in a variety of operational remote sensing projects, such as a provincial vegetation phenology project and a near real-time flood monitoring program.

Why Geography at UTM?

Geography at UTM harbours a diverse group of researchers and subdisciplines, and has great facilities and support to conduct high-quality research. I am currently working under the supervision of Dr. Yuhong He in the Remote Sensing and Spatial Ecosystems Modelling Lab (RSSEM), where I have access and support to use a variety of remote sensing instruments and lab facilities to conduct my research. My lab group is very supportive, innovative and enthusiastic and a great group to work alongside. Furthermore, UTM is a great campus and has a great community.

Honours and Awards

  • 2020 Mitacs Research Training Award
  • 2019 Graduate Expansion Fund Research
  • 2018-2019 University of Toronto Fellowship and Tuition Award
  • 2018 Graduate Expansion Funding Conference and Research 


Axiotis A., Y. He. 2019. Assessing the Effects of Emerald Ash Borer on Ash Trees in A Mixed Forest Stand Using High Spatial Hyperspectral Remote Sensing. American Association of Geographers 115th Annual Meeting. Washington, D.C., USA.
Axiotis A., Y. He. 2019. Using hyperspectral remote sensing to detect emerald ash borer infestations in natural forests. Graduate Geography Department Presentations, University of Toronto Mississauga. Mississauga, ON, Canada.
Axiotis A., Y. He. 2018. Exploring the Effects of Emerald Ash Borer on Ash Trees in a Natural Forest Stand Using Hyperspectral Imaging. Canadian Association of Geographers Ontario (CAGONT) Toronto, Ontario, Canada.
Smyth I., Kenny F., A. Axiotis. 2018. Operational Satellite-based Mapping and Monitoring in Ontario. Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources and Forestry. Ontario Public Service GIS Summit, Peterborough, Ontario, Canada.


Research Supervisor/mentor: 
Dr. Yuhong He


MSc Student – University of Toronto
HBSc Environmental Science, Earth Science and GIS – University of Toronto Mississauga