2009

Remote Sensing of stream algae using umanned aerial vehicles
Category : Environmental projects using technologies resulting from space exploration
Institution : University of Worcester, UK

Although the use of satellite technologies in environmental projects have become widespread, truthing of these data from the ground is critical and technologies that improve these capabilities indirectly improve the value of data from space platforms. This project will pioneer the use of umanned aerial platform (a Helikite – a combination of helium and a kite) to investigate photosynthetic organisms in streams in the UK using near infra-red spectral analysis developed for satellite use. Using equipment loaned by the Natural Environmental Research Council (NERC) in the UK, the project will develop new ways to use technology developed for space spectral sensing of life on the Earth on readily deployable field unmanned aerial vehicles. Thus, the project will not only advance the use of space technologies in environmental research, but also improve methods of ground truthing remote sensing data.