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Dr. Robert E. Davis
U.S. Army Engineer Research and Development Center
Cold Regions Research and Engineering Laboratory


 Dr. Robert E. Davis

Since 2006 Dr. Robert E. Davis has served as the Director of the Cold Regions Research and Engineering Laboratory (CRREL) in Hanover New Hampshire, one of seven laboratories that comprise the U.S. Army Engineer Research and Development Center (ERDC).

ERDC research and development supports the Department of Defense and other agencies in military and civilian projects. Principal mission areas include civil engineering, environment, water resources engineering and physical sciences. Research projects include facilities, airfields and pavements, protective structures, sustainment engineering, environmental quality, installation restoration (cleanup), compliance and conservation, regulatory functions, flood control, navigation, recreation, hydropower, topography, mapping, geospatial data, winter climatic conditions, oceanography, environmental impacts, and information technology. The ERDC has been named the Army’s R&D Organization of the Year five of the last eight years, and for the past three consecutive years.

CRREL conducts research primarily across a range of disciplines pertaining to fundamental and applied sciences and engineering in polar regions and in temperate and mountain regions. CRREL’s research capabilities also include terrestrial sciences, engineering and phenomenology as related to military planning and operations, and biogeochemical sciences. CRREL also includes Remote Sensing / Geospatial Information Systems Center of Expertise, the Corps of Engineers Center of Expertise for Civil Works Remote Sensing and Geographic Information Systems.

Dr. Davis began his career with the Corps in 1990 as a research physical scientist with the Geophysical Sciences Branch at CRREL. He performed research full-time as a member of CRREL’s technical staff from 1990 to 2001. From 2001 to 2006, he served as the technical director of military programs and cold regions science and engineering at CRREL. He also served as the lead technical director for ERDC’s geospatial research and engineering business area. In both these roles, he developed the strategy of the research portfolio; pursued research initiatives based on customer requirements; presented reports explaining the programs to internal and external customers; sought opportunities to diversify funding; and identified technology development partners inside and outside the ERDC.

Dr. Davis has conducted research on Earth surface signatures across the optical and microwave spectral regions to remotely retrieve information about it properties and processes. He has examined land-atmosphere interactions and the state of the terrain to improve the Soldier’s situational awareness of the environmental effects on military sensing. He also investigated improved approaches to monitor and forecast snow cover conditions for water resources and Nordic expeditionary operations. Dr. Davis holds a dual-major bachelor’s degree in geology and geography, a master’s in geography, and a doctorate in geography, all from the University of California, Santa Barbara. He has published numerous technical reports and peer reviewed papers and has received many distinguished awards to include the Army’s Research and Development Achievement Award. He has served on panels and committees of academic and other research organizations, and as a senior analyst augmenting the Department of Defense Joint Staff.