Monday 25 Jun 2018
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Sentinel-2 satellite data for the Mekong Delta, September 2017

Scientists from the German Aerospace Center (DLR) together with colleagues from the University Würzburg processed terabytes of high resolution optical and radar satellite images to identify and understand natural and human-related processes in the Mekong Delta. Thanks to their high temporal and spatial resolution, the new Sentinel-1 and Sentinel-2 satellites provide an ideal data basis for this effort. The false-colour composite image of the Mekong Delta shown in the figure below is based on a total of 475 Sentinel-2 Level 1C tiles that were recorded over a period of two years. In the three colour channels the image combines a statistical assessment for all recordings, in this case the lowest, mean and highest annual reflection values in near-infrared (NIR).

This approach allows, for example, the detection of detailed spatio-temperal patterns in the delta’s natural flood and rice cultivation cycles. Dark areas are covered year-round with water, light ones are free of water. Coloured areas are temporarily flooded, whereby dark blue surfaces are locations where two rice crops are grown each year and thus covered with water for a longer period than are the turquoise coloured areas where there are three rice crop cycles per year.

 

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