International Student Intern Spends Summer Contributing to NASA AirMOSS Project at OSU


Lara Founini dressed in full bug jacket


Lara Founini

Dressed in a full bug jacket with integrated head netting, long sleeve shirt, gloves and rubber boots, Lara Founini traveled to her field work site in 90 degree F (32 degrees C) weather riding an ATV and walking over five miles (8 kilometers) through difficult, wet, and mosquito infested terrain. This is how international student intern, Lara Founini, chose to spend part of her summer by contributing to the NASA AirMOSS Project for the Hydrologic Science Team of Oregon State University.

Lara is an Exchange Visitor from Institut National Polytechnique de Toulouse- National Engineering Institute of Electronics, Computer Science, Hydraulics and Telecommunications (INPT-ENSEEIHT) in France. Lara elected to do a summer internship at Oregon State University’s Department of Biological and Ecological Engineering for three months. Lara’s responsibilities included data evaluation, writing software code, and participation in field work. The field work included installation of three soil sensor profiles at the Southern Old Aspen site, Saskatchewan, Canada. This site will be flown over by a NASA research aircraft carrying an experimental P-band radar system to evaluate soil moisture using remote sensing. "This summer internship program at OSU gave me the opportunity to be part of a huge environmental project launched by NASA: the AirMOSS project” Lara explains, “I was able to work both in the field and on the post-processing part”.

Lara was highly praised by her supervisor, Professor Richard H. Cuenca. He states “Lara has made a significant contribution to the NASA AirMOSS project… and her performance was excellent in all aspects of the work”. He continues to explain the continuing impact of her work by commenting “at this minute I am working with the computer code she worked up to produce graphics for a presentation for the NASA AirMOSS Science Team meeting at Harvard Forest next week!” Further questions about the NASA AirMOSS Project for the Hydrologic Science Team can be directed to Richard Cuenca at: richard.cuenca@oregonstate.edu

Information about the Exchange Visitor Student Intern Program can be found at: http://oregonstate.edu/international/atosu/scholars/j-1