Forest Mapping from Remote Sensing – the journey from research to operational mapping by Iain H Woodhouse, Professor of Applied Earth Observation, The University of Edinburgh, and CEO of Carbomap.
Iain has spent the last 25 years developing techniques for active remote sensing of forests, and the most recent 10 of those years looking at ways to operationalise those methods. In this talk, he will provide two recent examples of new developments he has been involved in with collaborators in Edinburgh.
The first example is the use of Sentinel-1 SAR data to map forest disturbance. Utilising the high repeat rate (every 6 days) of Sentinel, it is possible to use coherent change detection to monitor forest change. The method developed is now being implemented into operational storm damage assessment by the Scottish Government and the Forestry Commission.
The second example describes the challenge of developing the use of LiDAR on ultra-long range UAVs, and shares some results from the first demonstration of this capability. The project was able to prove that a long range (1120km) fixed-wing platform can carry and operate a RIEGL VUX-1UAV and generate high quality point clouds.
In addition to discussing the technical challenges of active remote sensing for forest mapping, Iain will also share some experiences and reflections on the challenges of the business and commercial side of remote sensing, and the difficulties of spinning-out companies from a university and then making them successful in the rapidly growing satellite-applications market.