EROS Workshop Offers First Look at Land Change Monitoring, Assessment, and Projection Products

Jess Brown, project lead for Land Change Monitoring, Assessment, and Projection (LCMAP), welcomes attendees of a fall workshop at the USGS Earth Resources Observation and Science (EROS) Center. LCMAP is beginning production on Version One of LCMAP products and datasets.

The mapping and classification of land use and land cover has long been a primary duty for the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS), and remotely-sensed data at the Earth Resources Observation and Science (EROS) Center has served as the backbone of the Survey’s modern efforts.

In recent years, two advancements in remote sensing emerged that promise to revolutionize the field.

Brazilians Work with EROS Staff to Map, Monitor Agricultural Irrigation

SGT geomatics analyst and scientist Mac Friedrichs (second from left) works with Brazilian National Water Agency (ANA) staff in mid-October at EROS as they talk about how remote sensing can help to map Brazil’s irrigated agricultural lands, and also how it can help to monitor and measure water used to raise crops in that country. From left to right with Friedrichs are Juliana Lopes, Thiago  Fontenelle, and Daniel Ferreira.

Brazilian officials tasked with managing their country’s water resources are working with staff at the Earth Resources Observation and Science (EROS) Center to better understand how that valuable asset is being used for agricultural irrigation in their homeland.

USGS Burned Area Products Group in Denver Touts Value of Landsat ARD

An example of Landsat ARD being used in a Burned Area Product.

For all the great Federal records and remotely sensed products out there that have documented fires across the United States through the decades, it seems almost none have consistently and comprehensively mapped those burned areas across time and space.

At least not until now.

NASA’s AppEEARS Data Extraction Tool Adds USGS Datasets

AppEEARS time series graphs of eMODIS Smoothed NDVI (top) and SSEBop Evapotranspiration (bottom) for a point extraction at a grassland site in California (center). The two datasets were queried simultaneously and the request completed in 16 seconds.

A powerful data extraction tool that intuitively streamlines and simplifies the exploration of more than 100 datasets within NASA’s Earth Observing System Data and Information System (EOSDIS) now has expanded to include its first two datasets from the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS).

In what’s being called a “win-win situation” for both agencies, the Application for Extracting and Exploring Analysis Ready Samples (AppEEARS), developed by NASA’s Land Processes Distributed Active Archive Center (LP DAAC), went live with the two USGS datasets on Oct. 12, 2018.

Newman Offers Wide-Ranging Look at Potential Future of Landsat

National Land Imaging Program Coordinator Tim Newman

When it comes to the business of acquiring remotely sensed data, of preserving that data and providing a portal to it, National Land Imaging Program Coordinator Tim Newman is a man with a focus.

With Landsat 9 seemingly well-funded and on schedule for a December 2020 launch, Newman’s attention has turned now to getting the next Landsat in line after that right, whether it ends up being called Landsat 10 or Landsat X or whatever it may be.

Review Panels Ensure USGS, NASA on Path to Success with Landsat 9

Members of the Landsat 9 Ground System review panel listen to presentations made in September 2018 at the Critical Design Review held in Brandon, SD.

Agencies like NASA and the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) that commit multiple millions of dollars to put Landsat satellites into space need to know that the spacecraft, the sensors onboard, the ground system operating the satellite, and the launch vehicle are all designed and built the right way.

They help ensure that through review boards—independent panels comprised of subject matter experts who routinely examine the different mission elements and assess the veracity of their design, development, construction, testing, and integration.

EROS Leads Dialogue on Future of Earth Observation

A graphic of Earth observation systems, presented at the National Imagery Summit by Greg Stensaas, manager of the Requirements, Capabilities and Analysis for Earth Observation (RCA-EO) project and JACIE coordinator for the Earth Resources Observation and Science (EROS) Center

Forty-six years ago, there was a single Earth observation satellite circling the globe – Landsat 1.

By 1988, four countries operated such satellites. In 2018, there were 45 Earth observing satellites launched by September. Another 36 launches are planned this year.

The number of countries operating satellites? That’s swollen to 54.

Landsat 9 Ground System Meets Design Criteria to Move Forward

Stephen Zahn, USGS' Landsat 9 Ground System Manager, is fitted with a microphone before presenting at the L9 Ground System Critical Design Review in Brandon, SD. Keith Alberts, the USGS Landsat 9 Ground System Systems Engineer, looks on as Howard Hedger, a Landsat 9 Risk Manager on the TSSC contract, assists Zahn with the mic.

Tim Rykowski has a history of reviewing satellite ground systems. NASA’s Space Network Systems Manager, Rykowski figures he’s probably sat in on a few dozen such reviews during his 35 years at NASA, including the design and build of the Landsat 9 (L9) Ground System that’s going on now.

While each review experience is unique in its own way, Rykowski didn’t hesitate when asked his opinion about the work of the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) and the Earth Resources Observation and Science (EROS) Center on the L9 Ground System.