Guy Serbin, Contract Research Officer, Teagasc.

  • Dr. Guy Serbin is a Research Officer with Teagasc. He holds B.Sc. and M.Sc degrees in geology from Ben Gurion University of the Negev in Beer Sheva, Israel, and a Ph.D. in Soil Science from Utah State University in Logan, Utah, USA. His area of research includes satellite-based agricultural and environmental remote sensing, including operational sensor requirements. Since graduating and before coming to Ireland for employment with Teagasc, he conducted research for the USDA Agricultural Research Service, and provided analysis of crop conditions for the USDA Foreign Agricultural Service.


    Talk title:

    An agricultural and environmental remote sensing satellite program for Ireland: Mission benefits and requirements.

    Presentation Synopsis:

    Optical remote sensing methods for agricultural and environmental monitoring are exploited globally by governments, NGOs, and private corporations. The market value of Earth observation data, value-added services, and information products are expect to increase from US $2.3 billion to $4.5 billion by 2024. Due to cloud cover issues, clear imagery over Ireland can be difficult to acquire. While these data gaps are being filled by new satellite systems such as Sentinel-2, there exist a number of applications and regions that are or will remain underserved by remote sensing suites. An Irish remote sensing platform can help boost the nation’s economic, engineering, and scientific impact. Recent local and international developments present opportunities for the Irish space and geospatial industries, particularly in light of the recent Irish Space Industry Group (ISIG)‘s workshop discussing a potential Irish satellite concept. Biophysical parameters important to Ireland that should be monitored include live vegetation cover, chlorophyll content, photosynthetic efficiency, vegetation water content, non-photosynthetic vegetation cover (NPV, e.g., senescent vegetation such as crop residues and dry grasses), evapotranspiration, vegetation stress, and actively burning fires. Within Ireland, grassland, peatland, and gorse fire monitoring would benefit from having bands that can assess NPV, and remote sensing data will help support the nation’s €10.8 billion agri-food and drink industry. Advances in small satellite technology have enabled the placement of multiple sensors on small platforms like small sats, microsats, and nanosats. If swath width can be constrained, a constellation of Irish satellites could provide excellent coverage at a minimum of cost, and with a built-in advantage of inexpensive redundancy.



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