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Andrea Donnellan

Jet Propulsion Laboratory
California Institute of Technology
Manager Instrument Systems Implementation and Concepts Section

Expertise: Crustal deformation and modeling using GNSS, InSAR, and stereophotogrammetry
About Me Publications
Andrea Donnellan is manager of JPL’s Instrument Systems Section. Still an active researcher Donnellan collects and analyzes geodetic data to model deformation of mechanical Earth processes and study cascading geohazards. She has applied Interferometric Synthetic Aperture Radar (InSAR/UAVSAR), Global Navigation Satellite System (GNSS), and stereophotogrammetry or Structure from Motion (SfM) from small uninhabited aerial vehicles (sUAS) to studying the underlying dynamics of earthquake fault systems, plate boundaries, landslides, and wildfire/debris flows cascades. Donnellan leads JPL’s Near-Surface Airborne Instruments Laboratory (N-SAIL). She is PI of QUAKES-I developing an airborne imaging suite of visible and SWIR cameras for stereophotogrammetry and improving UAVSAR capability to study and respond to natural disasters. Donnellan is on the NISAR Science Team. Since 2020 she has led NASA’s Surface Topography and Vegetation Incubation Study, which released its study report in June 2021. Donnellan was Principal Investigator of NASA's GeoGateway project of which the predecessor project QuakeSim won NASA’s Software of the Year Award in 2012. Donnellan has conducted field studies in California, in Antarctica, on the Altiplano of Bolivia, in Mongolia, and on Variegated Glacier in Alaska. She has been a geophysicist at JPL since 1993. Donnellan has degrees in Geology (BS Ohio State University, 1986), Geophysics (MS and PhD Caltech 1988 and 1991), and Computer Science (MS University of Southern California, 2003). She held a National Research Council postdoctoral fellowship at NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center from 1991-1993. Donnellan has received the Presidential Early Career Award, the MUSES of the California Science Center Woman of the Year Award, Women in Aerospace Award for Outstanding Achievement, JPL's Lew Allen award, several NASA Space Act Awards, the Antarctic Service Medal, and has been a finalist in the astronaut selection process three times. Donnellan has a glacier in Antarctica named after her for her work on that continent.

SCEC Participation

SCEC Mentor (1996)