Rune Storvold

Research theme: 

Rune Storvold is Senior Scientist at the Earth Observation Department and Head of the Unmanned Aircraft Group, at Norut in Tromsø, Norway. He has background in optics and atmospheric physics from the University of Bergen (MS) and University of Alaska Fairbanks (PhD). He started at Norut in 2003 using synthetic aperture radar data for measurements of cryospheric properties and doing modeling of microwave scattering and propagation in snow and ice.

In 2005 he established the Unmanned Aircraft Group at Norut, developing aircraft, sensors, and communication and control systems for airborne remote sensing using unmanned Aircraft. The focus is to develop techniques and services aimed towards both science and industry to meet the need for high resolution high quality measurements of the arctic environment. The Norut UAS group is currently involving 5 fulltime scientist and one engineer in the development and research on unmanned aircraft and sensor systems.

He is co-chairing the Arctic Council Arctic Monitoring and Assessment Programs Expert Group on Unmanned Aircraft, working for increased access to the Arctic Airspace for scientific data collection using unmanned Aircraft and increased circumpolar collaboration. He has been on the board of directors of UAS Norway since its establishment in 2008 and he is on scientific committees of the ISPRS UAVg and the ISARRA conferences.


1991: Cand. Mag, University of Bergen.
1993: Cand. Scient. University of Bergen.
2001: Ph.D. University of Alaska Fairbanks. Ph.D. thesis was on stratospheric ozone depletion and spectroscopic trace gas measurements.

1997-2002: Part of the Site scientist team for the Department of Energy Atmospheric Radiation Measurement (ARM) program North Slope of Alaska (NSA) site.
1998-2003: Rapid Response Team Manager for the ARM NSA site.
Research experience: Physical optics and atmospheric science.


Work areas: 

Current focus areas for the Norut UAS group:

  • UAS remote sensing service development
  • UAS data analysis and visualization
  • UAS communication
  • UAS system and sensor integration

Application areas

  • Oil spill detection and mapping
  • Renewable energy resource mapping and infrastructure inspection
  • Search and Rescue
  • Environmental change and monitoring
  • Ecology and fauna
  • Cryospheric properties, snow, glaciers and sea-ice