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Earth Observation data to measure and predict grass biomass

2019-01-15T08:44:01+00:00By |News|


Quantech Solutions assisted the Satellite Application Catapult manage an Innovate UK project that used satellites and modelling and longitudinal grass measurements to predict grass growth.

Quantech Solutions managed the interactions between the Satellite Applications Catapult, Cranfield University and the Agri-EPI Centre demonstration farm sites across the UK.


The task was to use the ground-based measures (Platemeter and cutting grass from a quadrat) to ‘ground-truth’ the Earth Observation data.


Quantech was responsible for the farm sites, but also contributed our expertise with developing a precision Ag tool, the Grassometer, to actual field measurements. The Earth Observation data was used with ground data to model and validate grass biomass measurement by satellite. Field measurements were made from January through to the end of August in one year. The farms were located from Aberdeenshire, Fife, Dumfries, Shropshire and Somerset. Ground measurements were taken every other week. Satellite data was acquired as frequently as possible.

We also managed & facilitated workshops for farmers and participated in the Satellite Applications ‘Sprint’ session to develop future project direction. The Satellite Application Catapult developed a ‘Demonstrator’: a mock up of a potential web-based grassland decision tool for farmers. This was an extremely useful way to stimulate discussion between farmers and developers, as they saw and could comment on what the output may look like.


The results from the project led to a greater understanding of the issues with measuring grass from space, developed a group of companies and researchers who wanted to collaborate for future bids and to commercialise the outputs.