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Sneak Peek: Remote Sensing in Commercial Agriculture: Perspective on Innovations

Dr. Christopher Lund is a research scientist and product manager for METER’s new irrigation management instrumentation group. He has more than a decade of experience working with land surface flux measurements, terrestrial water budgets, and soil-vegetation-atmosphere transfer scheme modeling. Prior to joining METER, he served as a research scientist on the NASA-CSUMB SIMS (Satellite Irrigation Management Support) Project, a multi-year collaboration between the California Department of Water Resources, NASA, and CSU Monterey Bay providing California growers with novel irrigation decision support tools. Dr. Lund’s current research focuses on developing cost-effective irrigation management instrumentation for commercial markets. Dr. Lund will be giving a talk on innovations in agricultural remote sensing at the Third Professional Workshop on Technology For Irrigation Scheduling.  He will talk about his work with the SIMS team and what growers can do with remote sensing data to estimate things like evapotranspiration.  He’ll also address how to improve those estimates by combining them with field measurements from ground based instrumentation such as soil moisture sensors.

remote sensing in commercial agriculture

Image: USGS Landsat Project Website

“The advantage of satellite remote sensing is that it allows you to look at many fields at once and also integrate across spatial variability.  The down side is it doesn’t give you access to everything you might want for irrigation management, so there are certain things you have to measure on the ground.  When it comes to remote sensing data and ground measurements, I don’t think it’s an either/or situation.  I think the future is hybrid products utilizing both remote sensing and ground based measurements,” he says.

He will also speak on how satellite derived NDVI data can benefit from new inexpensive ground based-sensors like the SRS.  This enables scientists to make sure that their satellite NDVI data accurately reflect what’s happening on the ground.

The seminar will be held at the Third Professional Workshop On Technology For Irrigation Scheduling on February 11, 2015 at the CREA auditorium, Calle Jose Galan Merino Sevilla, Spain.

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