College of Science

Department of Applied Environmental Science

Headshot of Forrest Melton


Faculty Profile

Forrest Melton

Forrest Melton is a Senior Research Scientist with California State University, Monterey Bay and the NASA Ames Cooperative for Research in Earth Science and Technology (ARC-CREST). Forrest currently serves as the Program Scientist for the NASA Western Water Applications Office, and as an Associate Program Manager for Water Resources with the NASA Applied Sciences Program. 

Since 2003, he has worked with the Biospheric Sciences Branch at NASA Ames Research Center on the development of modeling and data assimilation frameworks including the Satellite Irrigation Management Support (SIMS) system, the Terrestrial Observation and Prediction System (TOPS), the NASA Earth Exchange (NEX) and OpenET. His research interests include applications of satellite data to improve management of natural resources, remote sensing of evapotranspiration and agricultural water requirements, and ecosystem and carbon cycle modeling.  Forrest holds B.S. and M.S. degrees in Earth Systems Science from Stanford University, and has authored over fifty papers and book chapters on applications of remote sensing.  He is the recipient of honor awards from NASA for his contributions to TOPS and NEX, and has been recognized for his work on applications of satellite data for water management with awards from the California Department of Water Resources, the Federal Labs Consortium and NASA. In 2022, he was awarded the NASA Exceptional Public Service Medal for his work to develop and advance applications of satellite data for water resources management.


Title Senior Research Scientist
Phone 831-917-6076
Research Lab Water, Agriculture, Technology and Remote Sensing (WATRS) Lab
Office Location Chapman Science Center, E126 (NASA Co-op)
Areas of Expertise Remote Sensing, Hydrology, Agronomy, Ecosystem and Carbon Cycle Modeling