Success Stories - Sentinel Success Stories
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Sentinel Success Stories
New and robust techniques for land mapping set the foundation for accurate, high resolution global maps that are necessary for taking on the world’s greatest challenges.
Space-borne technology has long been used to spot the tell-tale signs that can help to predict when volcanoes will reawaken. Now scientists have combined machine learning with more than half-a-million Copernicus Sentinel-1 images with the aim of forecasting eruptions on a global scale.
Copernicus Sentinel-1 data enable oil spill detection in South-eastern Mediterranean Sea
16 February 2023
A German-Israeli research team used Copernicus Sentinel-1 data to train a deep-learning based oil spill detection system in the South-eastern Mediterranean Sea, which can be used for early-stage oil contamination alerts.
Copernicus Sentinel-2 zooms in on the Antarctic
19 January 2023
Improved Copernicus Sentinel-2 coverage of the Antarctic is set to advance science and exploration in the icy continent.
Access to extended coverage over terrestrial areas will help researchers to map out safe routes through previously unexplored Antarctic regions, as well as supporting a global validation campaign of optical Earth observation data.
Copernicus Sentinel-2 helps research on algal blooms in Antarctica
19 December 2022
The Copernicus Sentinel-2 mission is helping to estimate snow algae in the Antarctic Peninsula for the first time ever—making a difference to researchers.
In countries like Finland—where the large amount of water bodies would imply enormous associated costs for authorities to use traditional monitoring methods across the entire nation—the use of satellite data are particularly helpful.
Space data to help Pakistan recover from its record floods
15 November 2022
As Pakistan contends with the impact of the torrential rains that plunged it into crisis, experts are tapping into the potential of Earth observation data to help communities rebound from the disaster.
To support the response to the crisis, a flood monitoring method is being used that was developed as part of an ESA activity called eDrift, which lies within the agency’s FutureEO programme.
The aim of eDrift – which is led by the CIMA Research Foundation – is to develop remote sensing products that will enable organisations such as insurance companies and government agencies to assess the effects of catastrophes and finance recovery efforts.
Copernicus Sentinels key to tracking carbon flux in peatlands
03 November 2022
Copernicus Sentinel data help strengthen policy decisions on European peatland restoration – possibly reducing greenhouse gas emissions.
Copernicus Sentinels help to spur green financial investments
27 October 2022
Copernicus Sentinel-2 is supporting a data-driven transformation for the financial sector that will accelerate green economic development in Europe and beyond.
Imagery from the mission is contributing to a new initiative that aims to produce comprehensive, open datasets combining information on the ownership and location of industrial facilities with the risks they pose to the environment.
Copernicus Sentinels help assess flood damage in Pakistan
06 October 2022
Linked to climate change impacts, Pakistan has been undergoing severe flooding all summer, leaving thousands displaced, and causing severe devastation to agriculture with possible health issues in various areas—the Copernicus Sentinels are bringing valuable information on assessing the damage, for aid purposes.
Sentinel data fusion aids asparagus farming in Peru
09 September 2022
Researchers have used Copernicus Sentinel imagery collected over Peru to track the production of asparagus, a major Peruvian farming export that is widely consumed in Europe.
They hope this will inform improved decision-making and build resilience into the asparagus supply chain, benefiting local farmers, the environment and ensuring less food waste between farm and table.
The Italian island of Sardinia often suffers wildfires in the summer, whether due to natural phenomena or to human-induced ones, for instance by shepherds trying to control certain grazing lands. Young researchers of Sardegna Clima - an organisation working for climate and wildfire monitoring since 2009 - are making a difference with the help of Copernicus Sentinel-2 data.
Scientists are using the Copernicus Sentinels to track the impacts of the searing heatwaves and fierce wildfires that are gripping parts of the continent this summer.
Copernicus Sentinel-1 is supporting the emergency response to the most severe period of flooding northeast Bangladesh has encountered in more than a century. Radar imagery from the mission was used to map the extent of the crisis, revealing vast swathes of the region inundated by floodwaters.
Sentinels for sustainable cotton
07 July 2022
As we reach for our clean fluffy towels and white T-shirts this summer, more and more of us demand our cotton to be eco-friendly. A study funded by ESA uses satellite data to promote the sustainable production of cotton.
Remote sensing scientists have developed an innovative method that combines atmospheric data with Earth observation imagery to probe the behaviour of an Italian volcano that is known for its frequent and violent eruptions.
The analysis – which focused on the Stromboli volcano off the north coast of Sicily – could help volcanologists characterise the risks of eruptions, supporting mitigation efforts in local communities.
Remote sensing scientists are using data from several Copernicus Sentinel missions to probe the behaviour of a transient Namibian river that serves as a crucial lifeline to those who live in the arid landscape through which it flows.
They hope this will deliver insight to help improve water security in regions that are experiencing increasing periods of drought due to rising global temperatures.
As the world’s population continues to grow at a breakneck speed and the climate crisis increases the likelihood of droughts, the demand for water for irrigation is growing. New research shows how Earth observation data help map the extent water is used for agricultural irrigation, guiding strategies that aim to protect freshwater resources.
An expansion of a global data series that enables scientists to explore the impact of climate change on the world’s lakes has been released. The variables that make up the dataset were generated using data delivered by numerous Earth observation missions, including Sentinel-1, Sentinel-2 and Sentinel-3 of the European Union’s Copernicus Programme.
For a decade, International Day of Forests on 21 March, has marked an opportunity to raise awareness about the importance of forests. About 30% of Earth's surface is covered by forests, but their area is declining annually through small scale disturbances such as illegal logging, or conversion of forestland for agriculture, clearing to pastures for livestock and urban landscapes.
Forests play a critical role in Earth's climate by providing a carbon sink. They sequester large quantities of the carbon dioxide, including that released by human activities. However, an estimated 20% of anthropogenic greenhouse gas emissions are then released back into the atmosphere through deforestation.
As we work towards net zero carbon solutions, it is vital to know how much carbon is being held in forest biomass and monitor change in biomass carbon stock. In this regard, the consistent temporal radar observations from Copernicus Sentinel-1 are adding precious value to scientific efforts to track the state and dynamics of forest biomass globally.