Since FORMOSAT-2 was launched in 2005, Spot Image’s responsive teams have been exploiting its capabilities to meet users’ varied needs. The examples below show how.
The ability to acquire repeat imagery of an area of interest every day under the same conditions guarantees a timely flow of compatible data. FORMOSAT-2 guarantees the same viewing parameters every time. You can analyse images acquired at different dates and extract the information you need for your application, without any need for additional processing.
View more case studies about change detection on our FORMOSAT-2 applications page and see thematic animations online.
Useable imagery guaranteed
Monitoring crop yields at Pot-au-Pin farm
FORMOSAT-2’s blue spectral band is a precious aid for agricultural applications. In this example, the satellite’s frequent revisit rate enabled farmers to monitor yields of carrot and leek crops.
Over 2 months, FORMOSAT-2 acquired 58 images. Half of these images were useable for extracting vegetation indexes to manage yields (cloud cover precluded analysis of the other images).
FORMOSAT-2’s revisit capability ensures data continuity irrespective of required acquisition frequency or weather conditions (because the satellite acquires imagery 1 hour earlier than other systems, it limits the obscuring effects of mist).
A complementarity range of sensors for farming projects
From 2006, FORMOSAT-2 established itself in the farming applications market, notably serving the Joint Research Centre’s MARS PAC project and Infoterra’s Farmstar project. Because SPOT 5 and FORMOSAT-2 offer similar performance characteristics, their data are easily used in combination.
The Farmstar service, introduced 5 years ago, provides farmers with recommendations and advice for monitoring crops at field level. As crop imagery has to be acquired during specific periods, the service’s growing success was putting increasing pressure on satellite capacity.
Forty FORMOSAT-2 scenes were therefore acquired in 2006 and validated for operational use for the Farmstar project. This year, the number of FORMOSAT-2 scenes acquired for the project was doubled.
The Wake Island race
FORMOSAT-2’s daily revisit capability also means it responds effectively to urgent acquisition requests. Last summer, in the face of a hurricane, Wake Island in the Pacific had to be evacuated for the first time in 50 years. On this occasion, the U.S. government requested satellite imagery to conduct post-hurricane damage assessment.
On the starting line with competing optical satellite systems, FORMOSAT-2 was the first to acquire and deliver a useable image of the area. The satellite was subsequently tasked daily until the customer’s requirements had been fully satisfied, even observing the first U.S. vessels to arrive on the scene.
An effective natural disaster monitoring system
For more than 6 months now, FORMOSAT-2 has been called upon systematically to provide imagery for the International Charter on Space and Major Disasters.
FORMOSAT-2’s ability to respond quickly in the event of earthquakes, volcano eruptions, forest fires and flooding has already proved vital in helping affected local populations. See the charter’s website for more information: http://www.disasterscharter.org/new_e.html.
Besides responding to charter activations, FORMOSAT-2 is also supporting new applications of satellite imagery to aid natural disaster response. For example, see how it has been employed to track the mud volcano eruption in Java.
Djibouti in 2-metre natural colour
FORMOSAT-2 offers the ability to acquire coverages in a short time. With its 24-km swath and daily revisits, the satellite can cover large areas in a matter of weeks.
The recent coverage of the territory of Djibouti acquired in 2-metre colour illustrates FORMOSAT-2’s versatility.