Sentinel-1, expected to be launched in 2013, is one of the five missions that the European Space Agency (ESA) is developing for Europe’s Global Monitoring for Environment and Security (GMES) programme. The design of the Sentinel-1 mission is primarily based on marine applications; however, there is increasing interest in using it for land applications.
With this aim, in 2009 ESA carried out the major international AgriSAR field campaign as part of the mission’s preparatory activities. The campaign investigated the extent to which frequent coverage from the C-band radar on Sentinel-1 could deliver essential information to improve agricultural practices.
Scientists have spent two years analysing the data collected in the campaign and the results show that agricultural applications could benefit greatly from Sentinel-1’s all-weather images. The frequent coverage that Sentinel-1 offers is especially useful for monitoring crops where growth and management practices mean that they are constantly changing. According to Malcolm Davidson, Head of ESA’s Campaign Section, “the AgriSAR campaign data will continue to support the development of new ways of using C-band radar images from space for land applications”.
Further information is available at ESA