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01/02/2018

The Efficient Use of Water in Agriculture program participates in the MOIST project – Managing and Optimizing Irrigation by Satellite Tools

Leading Danish and European experts in satellite technology will work with the agricultural sector to develop a system to optimise the use of water resources in farming, using satellite data. Innovation Fund Denmark has invested more than 1M Euro in a project that will improve the yield from every litre of water used in the field.

Farmers do not currently have access to sufficiently precise information on the water amount, moment and location to irrigate their fields. Satellite technology is now able to help the farming industry by providing precise and up to date knowledge on the optimal times to irrigate fields. Using parameters such as evapotranspiration and water content in the soil, the system will be able to tell farmers exactly when their crops have most need of water. This will both improve harvests and benefit the environment by reducing the quantity of nutrients leached from the soil. The financial benefit from the project is predicted to be 13 M€ per year in Denmark alone, but the results will later be extended to the international market including areas with limited water resources.

The data originates from the European Space Agency satellites and has been made available free of charge through the EU Copernicus Programme. The project will research on the synergy between the different sensors radar, optical and thermal, onboard the satellites Sentinel 1, 2 and 3.