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Spatial Analysis Lab at NIMBioS

The Spatial Analysis Lab (SAL) at NIMBioS offers state-of-the-art spatial analysis capabilities to researchers investigating biological, geographic, and socio-economic processes. SAL enables cross-disciplinary research for those in academia, government and industry who are engaged in biogeographical modeling, spatial statistics, data acquisition and mapping.

The lab also trains students in spatial data collection and analysis, supports the work of researchers at NIMBioS, and hosts tutorials and workshops offered through NIMBioS, including online courses.

A unique component of SAL is a sub-concentration on spatial analysis in biology. Biology at SAL, or BaSAL, supports research activities that collect and synthesize large-scale spatial data to understand biological and socio-economic processes, especially in the areas of biodiversity, disease ecology, and human-environment interface.

SAL Brochure

Analytical Lab Capabilities

  • Large-scale spatial data capture and collection
  • Data visualization and analysis (ArcGIS, ENVI, Trimble Pathfinder Office, FARO SCENE)
  • Training and outreach

Field Instrumentation

  • Terrestrial laser scanner
  • Unmanned Aerial System (max. payload: 5 kg)
  • Visual, multispectral & hyperspectral sensor packages
  • Trimble Juno handheld GPS units

FAA Small Unmanned Aircraft Certified Pilot and Insured Operation (documentation available upon request)

A recharge center at the University of Tennessee, Knoxville, SAL was developed in collaboration with UT's College of Arts & Sciences, and the Departments of Ecology & Evolutionary Biology and Geography.



  • Current Project Engagement: Enhance your project by working with us on a spatial analysis component.
  • Grant Facilitation: Add SAL capabilities to strengthen and expand the scope and impact of a grant or contract proposal.
  • Education and Outreach: Develop a tutorial or workshop with us that combines your research area with the capabilities of SAL and NIMBioS.


SAL Contacts:
Lab email:

Mona PapeĊŸ, SAL Director
Ecology & Evolutionary Biology, Univ. of Tennessee
Eric Carr, SAL Science Coordinator
NIMBioS Computational Data Engineer

1122 Volunteer Blvd., Suite 106
University of Tennessee
Knoxville, TN 37996-3410
PH: (865) 974-9334
FAX: (865) 974-9461
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From 2008 until early 2021, NIMBioS was supported by the National Science Foundation through NSF Award #DBI-1300426, with additional support from The University of Tennessee, Knoxville. Any opinions, findings, and conclusions or recommendations expressed in this material are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the views of the National Science Foundation.
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