Data Services

RMBL offers scientists a variety of data services for scientists including data curation and archiving assistance, drone imagery acquisition and processing, and statistical and GIS consulting.

Some of these services are offered gratis for researchers paying station fees, while others have additional fees associated with them. See our rates page for more information about fees associated with specific services.

Data Curation and Archiving

We will provide interested scientists up to 4 hours of annual staff time to assist with data curation, archiving, and submission to a public database. If scientists would like data services beyond the initial 4 hours of support, RMBL would charge a nominal fee.

We are encouraging many RMBL Scientists to submit their public data to the Environmental Data Initiative archive, an NSF-supported repository for environmental datasets. On request, we can provide template metadata to make it easier to prepare data for submission to EDI.

Please contact Jennie Reithel ( if you are interested in data curation services.

Data Analysis Consulting

The RMBL research scientist offers limited data analysis and statistical consulting services. Please contact Ian Breckheimer ( for more information. This service is available for scientists and students to discuss approaches to finding, manipulating, or analyzing data for your projects. Open office hours will be Tuesdays and Thursdays from 5-6pm Mountain Time on the Zoom platform starting Tuesday June 9th 2020 and running through mid-August 2020, but is also be available by appointment.

Breckheimer’s statistical analysis toolkit is fairly broad, encompassing traditional mixed-effects approaches as well as Bayesian hierarchical models, geostatistics, and machine learning. He is also available to assist scientists in finding and using data generated as part of the Spatial Data Platform project.

Drone Imagery Acquisition

In summer 2020, we will begin offering drone imagery acquisition services for RMBL scientists on RMBL property as well as public lands managed by the US Forest Service.

Initially, we will make slots for five drone “missions” available to RMBL scientists free of charge on a first-come, first-served basis. Each mission can collect data at one site for up to an hour of flight time.  We hope to expand these services in the future, but additional fees may apply.

The platforms and sensors we are currently operating (DJI Mavic 2 Pro with a MapIR Survey 3 IR camera) allow us to collect 2 mm – 3 cm resolution RGB imagery and 4 mm – 6 cm infrared imagery that can be used to calculate vegetation properties like NDVI as well as ultra-high-res elevation models and canopy height models.

To submit a drone imagery request, please contact Ian Breckheimer ( Please include in the request the following information:

  • the location of the site to be surveyed, including a polygon showing the area of interest. Please note that wilderness areas and most private lands are off limits.
  • the ground resolution requested. This can vary from 2 mm to 3 cm with our current platforms and sensors.
  • the time window requested for the survey. Generally, we need at least 14 days to submit a request for permission to launch from USFS lands.

If you’d like a better sense of what the products from this imagery might look like, here’s an example of a drone dataset that was collected in 2019.