In broad term, satellite imagery is used for tracking and measuring human and natural activity across the Earth. The satellites can also be turned and adjusted to capture detailed images of our moon.
Satellite imagery can be used to produce images of large or small parts of the world from a small section of streets to an entire hemisphere. There are many techniques that go into the type of satellite imagery that may be requested.
Remote sensing is a term often used with satellite imagery; however remote sensing can be used for a range of activities such as ultrasounds. Gaining data from a distance is the basic understanding of remote sensing. This is essentially the concept behind satellite imagery.
Active and Passive Remote Sensing
There are active and passive types of remote sensing which includes things like SAR (Synthetic Aperture Radar). SAR is a form of active remote sensing in that it produces a source of energy from the sensor itself. These are the energy beams or radio waves sent down to Earth and then reflected off surfaces back to the sensor. Passive remote sensing on the other hand does not have an active source of energy to illuminate or observe an object. It uses natural energy instead.
Geoimage asked “If you had your own satellite what would you capture?” and we got some impressive responses. Here are three amazing answers that we thought to share with you. Each takes a unique approach to the use of satellite imagery and how this type of remote sensing can inspire the way we look at Earth through a different perspective.
Images of sand dunes at regular intervals to measure how they move across the desert. This is critical to seismic data acquisition because geophysicists think of the near surface as being static. We regularly merge and use data collected over a period of decades. The near surface is likely to have changed significantly over this period. – Bruce Blake, Geophysicist
I would constantly go to areas of large geomorphic activity to monitor changes. The glaciers and lake/river movements in New Zealand are absolutely beautiful and change at a rapid rate. Furthermore, using the satellites to see river morphing, meander cut-offs in real time and changes of course. Then a bit of a fun use, I would probably track my cat the entire time she is outside and find out what goes through their minds and where they are keeping the blueprints to take over the world. – Pranav Bhagwat, Project Officer
Imagery for visual art. I love looking at remote sensing imagery, particularly when enhanced by the skillful processors at Geoimage. Be it urban density or sparsely developed areas. Landforms or man-made areas can be art when viewed from a satellite. – Scott Bilben, Geologist
You can always check through our website for more information on satellite imagery or reach out to the friendly Geoimage team.