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Personal profile

Personal profile

Chris Hecker has an MSc degree in Earth Sciences from the University of Basel, Switzerland (1999) and a PhD degree in Remote Sensing of Earth Resources from the University of Twente, The Netherlands (2012).

From 2000 to 2001 he worked at the Belize Audubon Society, where he implemented and managed a small GIS and Remote Sensing unit to support sustainable decision making of tropical natural resources. In 2001 Chris joined the then International Institute for Aerospace Survey and Earth Sciences (ITC), where he combined his background in earth sciences with remote sensing and GIS. In 2003 he joined ITC’s department of Earth Systems Analysis, teaching MSc level courses in various topics of remote sensing for earth resources exploration.

In 2012 Chris defended his PhD thesis (“cum laude”) on thermal infrared spectroscopy of feldspars under Prof. Freek van der Meer and Dr. Mark van der Meijde. Since 2014, Chris is an Assistant Professor (with Tenure Track) in Geological Remote Sensing, focusing on thermal remote sensing of earth resources, such as geothermal systems and rare elements (e.g. gold, REEs).

Prizes and awards

  • PhD awarded with “cum laude”, November 2012.
  • Best PhD thesis nominee for Overijssel PhD award 2013 (top 3-5% per year nominated).
  • University of Twente Graduation Award, August 2015 (with MSc student Babatunde Fagbohun 2013-2015)


In his work Chris teaches geological remote sensing in the Geological Remote Sensing stream and tailor-made courses in Enschede and abroad. His educational involvements are related to the following topics:

  • Teaching advanced remote sensing topics (thermal IR, hyperspectral, laboratory spectroscopy).
  • Coordination of the Geological Remote Sensing  stream.
  • Support and supervision of Doctoral (PhD) and Masters of Science (MSc) field work and research theses.
  • Contact person for the BRUKER Vertex FTIR thermal spectrometer.

Research interests

Chris focuses his research on the mineralogy of hydrothermal and geothermal alteration systems to facilitate the exploration of mineral deposits and renewable energy sources. To study these systems, he applies laboratory, field and imaging spectroscopy in the thermal infrared. He uses these techniques for predictions of mineral compositions and to study spatial distributions of minerals in the landscape at different scales (from thinsection to outcrop). He is currently working on understanding the behaviour of minerals in thermal infrared core scanners, to better quantify the mineral compositions in drill core of geothermal and mineral systems; and to improve the assessment of the exploration potential for these systems.

Chris is the initiator and founder of the thermal infrared spectroscopic facilities at ITC. As an expert in TIR spectroscopy, he often collaborates with researchers from other domains, such as vegetation studies, egg-shell emissivity, as well as TIR spectral laboratories across the globe.

Chris has a current (2016dec) Hirsch-Index of 9 (Web of Science) and 12 (Google Scholar). He has an expansive international network and publishes with top international researchers in the field of Remote Sensing.

Other academic activities of Chris include:

  • Founder and Chair of the European Special Interest Group on Thermal Remote Sensing (www.itc.nl/sigtrs), which is a subgroup of the European Association of Remote Sensing Laboratories (www.earsel.org).

  • Member Editorial Board European Association of Remote Sensing Laboratories (EARSeL) Journal.

  • Reviewer for numerous journals, such as, Int J Remote Sens, Int J Appl Earth Obs, Geosphere, Appl Geophys, Rem Sens.

Fingerprint Dive into the research topics where Chris Hecker is active. These topic labels come from the works of this person. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

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Network Recent external collaboration on country level. Dive into details by clicking on the dots.

Research Output 2003 2019

Electron microprobe combined with spectral techniques application in geothermal exploration

Deon, F., van Ruitenbeek, F. J. A., Lievens, C., Hecker, C. A., Harijoko, A., van der Meer, F. D., Wilke, F. & Bruhn, D., 2019. 1 p.

Research output: Contribution to conferenceAbstractOther research output

Open Access
electron probe analysis
X-ray diffraction
capacity building
9 Downloads (Pure)

Geothermal exploration in Indonesia based on Mineralogy and Hydrothermal Alteration

Deon, F., Lievens, C., Barnhoorn, A., Welink, C., Imaro, T., Ryannugroho, R., Reyhanitash, E., Bruhn, D., van der Meer, F. D., UTAMI, R., Sibarani, B., Hecker, C. A., Appelt, O., Wilke, F., Daud, Y. & Den Hartog - Muharamiah, T., 2019, IOP Conf. Series: Earth and Environmental Science: 7th ITB International Geothermal Workshop (IIGW2018). IOP Publishing Ltd., Vol. 254. p. 1-10 10 p.

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contributionAcademic

Open Access
Geothermal fields
hydrothermal alteration

Infrared Spectral Imaging of Rock Mineralogy and Microstructure : powerpoint

van Ruitenbeek, F. J. A., van der Werff, H. M. A., Bakker, W. H., Hewson, R. D., Hecker, C. A. & van der Meer, F. D., 15 Mar 2019, p. s1-s22.

Research output: Contribution to conferenceOtherOther research output

2 Downloads (Pure)
Infrared radiation
Landsat 1
remote sensing
satellite-borne instruments