A comprehensive field campaign is conducted by the Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität München (LMU) to collect in situ information for the validation of satellite based retrievals of land surface parameters. These measurements will be used within MULTIPLY to validate the retrieval results of the MULTIPLY platform.
“Our campaign will last for the entire vegetation period in 2017 and collects data from a variety of different land cover types and different soil conditions”, says MULTIPLY team member Prof.dr. Alexander Loew.
During the LMU campaign essential characteristics of vegetation and plant conditions are collected, like e.g. information about vegetation biomass and water content as well as the soil moisture content. In addition, ground based measurements of the surface radiation fluxes and spectral properties of the plants are collected. The LMU team goes into the field on a regular basis during COPERNICUS SENTINEL satellite overpasses.
ADAS, Assimila and UCL are using the thinking from Multiply to develop the concept of a ‘Crop Intelligence System’ that could provide information to growers on crop growth and performance. The team won an Innovate UK feasibility study under the Satellites for Agri-Food programme. The project started in July 2016 and runs for twelve months. It aims to examine both the technical and commercial feasibility of generating ‘canopy curves’ on a field by field basis for all fields within a region, or country, allowing comparisons of crop performance between fields, farms, years, soils and management practices. By integrating with soil and weather datasets it should be possible to provide a dashboard for crop growth, giving information on light and water resources available and captured in each field. This would be an invaluable tool in the Yield Enhancement Network (YEN; www.yen.adas.co.uk) which seeks to understand variation in crop yields in the UK and across Europe. The Multiply and Crop Intelligence System projects have been presented to farmers and industry participants at YEN meetings in November 2016 and spring 2017.
Peter van Bodegom and Phil Lewis participated as invited scientists at a workshop by the International Space Science Institute (Bern, Switzerland) titled ‘’Exploring the Earth’s Ecosystems on a Global Scale: Requirements, Capabilities and Directions in Spaceborne Imaging Spectroscopy’’
The workshop aimed to bring together leading scientists in the world working on hyperspectral data for interpretation of the land surface with international scientists involved in the scientific preparation of several future hyperspectral satellite missions. Amongst others, the MULTIPLY concept was presented as a critical tool to evaluate the added value of hyperspectral data over multispectral Sentinels data and as a way to integrate information from multiple satellites, an important step forward for understanding the land surface and system Earth.