Deimos-1 and Landsat 8 Working Together on the UrthePlatform for Better Agricultural Monitoring
By Kyle Brazil, Platform Manager
Agriculture is one of the largest industries in the United States and farmers across the country increasingly rely on insights from Earth Observation data to make important decisions about how much water to use or where to apply fertilizer. The workhorse of these data collection efforts has been the 30m USGS Landsat 8 satellite, which provides high-quality imagery every 16 days. If it is not cloudy.
At the beginning of April, Landsat 8 captured a usable, cloud-free image of our farmer’s fields. By the time it passed overhead again two weeks later, clouds had covered a majority of the scene. This continued to happen for the next several passes until, in mid-May, the sensor was able to pick up some fields, but the data was mostly not useful. Meanwhile, Deimos-1 was passing overhead every few days, capturing usable imagery as the weather cleared up. This can be seen in this May time series: