Denise Thorsen

Denise Thorsen

Background and Research Interests

Dr. Thorsen's research interests include

  • Development of digital instrumentation and computer interfaces for acquisition of radar backscatter data.
  • Scattering mechanisms and propagation of radio signals through random media.
  • Radar techniques for observing the middle atmosphere, including neutral atmospheric wind motions, turbulence, temperature, and electron densities.
  • Wave dynamics and their interaction with the background atmosphere, including coupling of atmospheric regions, interactions between large-scale and small-scale wave motions, and global scale energy flux distributions.


  • ES 102 - Introduction to Electrical Engineering
  • EE 311 - Applied Engineering Electromagnetics
  • EE 331 - High Frequency Lab
  • EE 333 - Physical Electronics
  • EE 334 - Electronic Circuit Design
  • EE 341/343 - Digital Systems Analysis and Design
  • EE 342/443 - Computer Engineering Analysis and Design
  • EE 693 - Embedded Systems Design


  • Ph.D. in Electrical Engineering, University of Illinois, 1996
  • M.S. in Electrical Engineering, University of Illinois, 1991
  • B.S. in Electrical Engineering, University of Illinois, 1985

Areas of Specialization

  • Research in radar instrumentation
  • Measurements of the upper atmosphere.


  • Dr. Thorsen's current research is in radar instrumentation and measurements of the upper atmosphere.

Awards and Honors

  • Nominated Harold L. Olesen Award (1991) "Excellence in undergraduate teaching by graduate students"
  • Included in "List of teachers ranked excellent by their students"
  • CEDAR 1993 student poster prize.