Ziheng Sun, Ph.D.

Center for Spatial Information Science and Systems, George Mason University

4400 University Drive, MSN 6E1, George Mason University, Fairfax, VA 22030

zsun@gmu.edu | +1 703 993 6124 (office) | https://zihengsun.wordpress.com

Research Interests

– Geospatial Web Service (GWS);

– Geoprocessing workflow (GPW);

– Cyberinfrastructure;

– Geospatial Semantic Web;

– Geospatial Model Web;

– Remote sensing image analysis;

– Vegetation modeling and measuring;

– Agricultural drought monitoring and forecasting.


2009-2015 Ph.D. Photogrammetry and Remote Sensing the State Key Lab for Information Engineering in Surveying, Mapping and Remote Sensing (LIESMARS), Wuhan University

2005-2009 B.Sc. Geographical Information System School of Resource and Environmental Science, Wuhan University

Research Experiences


Research Assistant Professor

Center for Spatial Information Science and Systems

George Mason University


Research Associate

Center for Spatial Information Science and Systems

Geroge Mason University


Research Associate

the State Key Lab for Information Engineering in Surveying, Mapping and Remote Sensing (LIESMARS)

Wuhan University


Journal Papers:

  1. Ziheng Sun, Liping Di, Gil Heo, Chen Zhang, Hui Fang, Peng Yue, Lili Jiang, Xicheng Tan, Liying Guo, Li Lin, GeoFairy: Towards a one-stop and location based Service for Geospatial Information Retrieval. Computers, Environment and Urban Systems, 2017.
  2. Ziheng Sun, Hui Fang, Liping Di, Peng Yue, Realizing parameterless automatic classification of remote sensing imagery using ontology engineering and cyberinfrastructure techniques, Computers & Geosciences, Volume 94, September 2016, Pages 56-67.
  3. Sun, Z., Fang, H., Di, L., Yue, P., Tan, X., & Bai, Y. (2016). Developing a web-based system for supervised classification of remote sensing images. GeoInformatica, 20 (4), 1573-7624.
  4. Xicheng Tan, Liping Di, Meixia Deng, Fang Huang, Xinyue Ye, Zongyao Sha, Ziheng Sun, Weishu Gong, Yuanzheng Shao, Cheng Huang, Agent-as-a-service-based geospatial service aggregation in the cloud: A case study of flood response, Environmental Modelling & Software, Volume 84, October 2016, Pages 210-225, ISSN 1364-8152.
  5. Xicheng Tan, Liping Di, Meixia Deng, Jing Fu, Guiwei Shao, Meng Gao, Ziheng Sun, Xinyue Ye, Zongyao Sha, and Baoxuan Jin. Building an Elastic Parallel OGC Web Processing Service on a Cloud-Based Cluster: A Case Study of Remote Sensing Data Processing Service. Sustainability, 2015, vol. 7, no. 10, pp. 14245-14258.
  6. Ziheng Sun, Hui Fang, Meixia Deng, Aijun Chen, Peng Yue, Liping Di. Regular Shape Similarity Index: A Novel Index for Accurate Extraction of Regular Objects from Remote Sensing Images. Geoscience and Remote Sensing, IEEE Transactions on, 2015, vol. 53, no. 7, pp. 3737-3748, DOI: 10.1109/TGRS.2014.2382566.
  7. Ziheng Sun, Chunming Peng, Meixia Deng, Aijun Chen, Peng Yue, Hui Fang, Liping Di. Automation of Customized and Near-Real-Time Vegetation Condition Index Generation Through Cyberinfrastructure-Based Geoprocessing Workflows. Selected Topics in Applied Earth Observations and Remote Sensing, IEEE Journal of, 2015, vol. 7, no.11, pp. 4512-4522.
  8. Ziheng Sun, Peng Yue, Lei Hu, Jianya Gong, Liangpei Zhang, Xianchang Lu. GeoPWProv: Interleaving Map and Faceted Metadata for Provenance Visualization and Navigation. Geoscience and Remote Sensing, IEEE Transactions on, 2013, vol. 51, no. 11, pp. 5131-5136.
  9. Ziheng Sun, Peng Yue, Liping Di. GeoPWTManager: a task-oriented Web geoprocessing system. Computers & Geoscience, 2012, vol. 47, pp. 34-45.
  10. Ziheng Sun, Peng Yue, Xianchang Lu, Xi Zhai, Lei Hu. A task ontology driven approach for live geoprocessing in a service oriented environment. Transactions in GIS, 2012, vol. 16, no. 6, pp. 867-884.
  11. Peng Yue, Jianya Gong, Liping Di, Jie Yuan, Lizhi Sun, Ziheng Sun, Wang Qian. GeoPW: Laying Blocks for the Geospatial Processing Web. Transactions in GIS, 2010, vol. 14, no. 6, pp. 755-772.

Conference Papers:

  1. Zhang, C., Sun, Z., Heo, G., Di, L., & Lin, L. (2016, July). A GeoPackage implementation of common map API on Google Maps and OpenLayers to manipulate agricultural data on mobile devices. In Agro-Geoinformatics (Agro-Geoinformatics), 2016 Fifth International Conference on (pp. 1-4). IEEE.
  2. Liu, Z., Sun, Z., & Di, L. (2016, July). An analysis of land cover change in Northern Virginia in the first decade of 21st century. In Agro-Geoinformatics (Agro-Geoinformatics), 2016 Fifth International Conference on (pp. 1-5). IEEE.
  3. Zhang, C., Sun, Z., Heo, G., Di, L., & Lin, L. (2016, July). Developing a GeoPackage mobile app to support field operations in agriculture. In Agro-Geoinformatics (Agro-Geoinformatics), 2016 Fifth International Conference on (pp. 1-4). IEEE.
  4. Sun, Z., Di, L., Zhang, C., Lin, L., Fang, H., Tan, X., & Yue, P. (2016, July). Combining OGC WCS with SOAP to faciliate the retrieval of remote sensing imagery about agricultural fields. In Agro-Geoinformatics (Agro-Geoinformatics), 2016 Fifth International Conference on (pp. 1-4). IEEE.
  5. Sun, Z., Di, L., Fang, H., Zhang, C., Yu, E., Lin, L., … & Yue, P. (2016, July). Embedding Pub/Sub mechanism into OGC web services to augment agricultural crop monitoring. In Agro-Geoinformatics (Agro-Geoinformatics), 2016 Fifth International Conference on (pp. 1-4). IEEE.
  6. Guo, L., Sun, Z., Di, L., & Lin, L. (2016, July). Spatial distribution and variation analysis of Lyme disease in the Northeastern United States. In Agro-Geoinformatics (Agro-Geoinformatics), 2016 Fifth International Conference on (pp. 1-4). IEEE.
  7. Li Lin, Liping Di, Eugene Genong Yu, Lingjun Kang, Ranjay Shrestha, Md. Shahinoor Rahman, Junmei Tang, Meixia Deng, Ziheng Sun, Chen Zhang, Lei Hu, A review of remote sensing in flood assessment. In Agro-Geoinformatics (Agro-Geoinformatics), 2016 Fifth International Conference on. IEEE.
  8. Tan, X., L. Di, M. Deng, A. Chen, Sun, C. Huang, Y. Shao, and X. Ye. “AGENT- AND CLOUD-SUPPORTED GEOSPATIAL SERVICE AGGREGATION FOR FLOOD RESPONSE.” ISPRS Annals of the Photogrammetry, Remote Sensing and Spatial Information Sciences II, no. 4 (2015): 13-18.
  9. Michael Caleb You, Ziheng Sun, Liping Di, Joe Guo. A web-based semi-automated method for semantic annotation of high schools in remote sensing images. In Agro-geoinformatics (Agro-geoinformatics 2014), Third International Conference on (pp. 1-4). IEEE. 2014.
  10. Ziheng Sun, Liping Di, Aijun Chen, Peng Yue, Jianya Gong. The use of geospatial workflows to support automatic detection of complex geospatial features from high resolution images. Agro-Geoinformatics (Agro-Geoinformatics), 2013 Second International Conference on, IEEE. pp. 159-162.
  11. Liping Di, Peng Yue, Ziheng Sun. Ontology-supported complex feature discovery in a web service environment. Geoscience and Remote Sensing Symposium (IGARSS), 2012 IEEE International. IEEE, 2012, pp. 2887-2890.
  12. Ziheng Sun, Peng Yue. The use of Web 2.0 and geoprocessing services to support geoscientific workflows. in Geoinformatics, 2010 18th International Conference on. 2010.
  13. Peng Yue, Ziheng Sun, Jianya Gong, Liping Di, Xianchang Lu. A Provenance Framework for Web Geoprocessing Workflows. In IGRASS International Conference on 2011.
  14. Xi Zhai, Jianya Gong, Peng Yue, Ziheng Sun, Xianchang Lu. WYSIWYG Geoprocessing: Coupling Sensor Web and Geoprocessing Services in Virtual Globes, In: The 2011 ISPRS Joint-WG Workshop on “Geospatial Data Infrastructure: from data acquisition and updating to smarter services”, 2011 GuiLin, China.

Project experience

Joint Projects:

  1. OGC Testbed 12
  2. NSF project CyberConnector
  3. OGC Testbed 11
  5. DOE iGFDS
  6. VegScape
  7. Metadata Tracking in Geospatial Service Chaining and Geospatial Data Provenance, funded by National Natural Science Fundation of China.
  8. Task-oriented Information Aggregation Service Model in Earth Observation Sensor Web, funded by National Basic Research Program of China (973), Ministry of Science and Technology of China.
  9. Construct, track and evaluate geospatial service chain in a task-oriented approach, funded by the Doctor Independent Research Fund of Wuhan University.

Conference and Seminar Presentations

  1. ESIP summer meeting, Durham, NC, U.S.
  2. OGC TC meeting in World Bank, 2016, Washington, D.C., U.S.
  3. NSF EarthCube All Hands meeting, Denver, CO, U.S. (oral & post)
  4. CyberConnector on ESIP Winter Meeting 2016, Washington D.C. (oral & post).
  5. ESIP Winter Meeting 2015, Washington D.C., U.S. (post).
  6. OGC Testbed 12 Kickoff Meeting, 2016, USGS Headquater Building, Reston, VA, U.S. (oral).
  7. Geoinformatics 2010 conference on Jun. 19, 2010, Beijing, China (oral).
  8. ISPRS International Workshop on Spatiotemporal Computing, 13–15 July 2015, Fairfax, Virginia, USA.
  9. Agro-Geoinformatics 2013 on Aug 12-16, 2013, Fairfax, VA, U.S. (oral).

Developed Services & Software

  1. CyberConnector http://cube.csiss.gmu.edu
  2. Geoprocessing Service Kit
  3. GeoFairy
  4. GADMFS http://gis.csiss.gmu.edu/GADMFS/
  6. BPELPower
  7. WMD
  8. GeoPWProv
  9. GeoPWDesigner
  10. GeoPWTaskManager
  11. GeoPW Ontology Manager
  12. PowerGrid GIS Platform (EPGIS)

Scholarships & Awards

  1. One of the 15 cash award winners in the NGA Disparate Data Competition: GeoFairy.Map. Oct 2016. The award is $10,000 cash.
  2. Won the third prize in the GEO Geoappathon 2014 Competetion funded by GEO group (http://geoappathon.org/?page_id=307). The award is $2,500 cash.
  3. Won prize in the EarthServer Big Data Contest in 2014. http://www.earthserver.eu/BigDataFromSpace_contest/. The award is $600 cash.
  4. Awarded the 2010-2011th Trimble Scholarship funded by the Trimble Corporation in U.S.
  5. Awarded the 2012th Wuhan University Undergraduate Science Innovation Third Prize funded by Wuhan University.
  6. Awarded the 2012-2013th Undergraduate Excellent First Scholarship funded by Wuhan University.
  7. Awarded the 2012-2013th Wuhan University National Scholarship which is funded by the Department of Education in China.


  1. Skillful in programing using Java, JavaScript, JSP, C++/C, VB.
  2. Geospatial Software: Familiar with Quantum GIS, ArcGIS, GeoServer, GRASS GIS, OpenLayers, MapWindow, ENVI, ERDAS, eCognition, etc.
  3. Non-geospatial software: Familiar with Apache Cordova, Oracle BPEL, Oracle DataBase, BEA WebLogic, Apache Tomcat, Apache Axis2, Apache Ant, ActiveBPEL, PostgreSQL, Eclipse, some popular JS graphic libraries (ExtJS, RaphealJS, JQuery), etc.
  4. Familiar Coding Environment: Windows, Linux (Federa, Ubuntu, Red hat etc), Mac OS (Mavericks), Android.
  5. Familiar with Cloud computing technologies and software (Apache CloudStack).
  6. Familiar with the development and management of Web and mobile phone applications.
  7. Capable to design and build websites.
  8. Have knowledge on remote sensing image recognition, Earth science modeling and geospatial data mining.