Dear STARS friends,

Please find here the December 2016 edition of the STARS newsletter. 


The STARS project is far from over. We happen to know that many teams have been producing research outcomes in recent months and much more of that work is scheduled to be done in the time coming. There has been some backlog in getting reports finished and having results (systems, data sets, algorithms) finalized. It is good to witness that even where budget has run out, the work has not finished and all teams understand the project thus far has accumulated a goldmine of data to continue work with. In a next newsletter, we hope to report from ongoing work in Tanzania's Ministry of Agriculture, in Nigeria by ICRISAT, and also from other partners and the ITC team.


Of specific note is the publication of the final version of the STARS Landscaping Study. Neil McKenzie and his CSIRO team are to be congratulated with the result, which will well serve our community for its analysis of status quo and its identification of high potential investment suggestions. Please find the report online here.


The recently held AARSE conference was a clear meeting point for remote sensing scientists and the African Earth Observation community at large.  Wilmar van Ommeren, former MSc student Wageningen, and then affiliated with the ICRISAT Mali team featured an interesting presentation on his analytical work of crop images obtained with a miniMCA camera on-board of an octocopter.  With special sessions organized by the University of Maryland team and another one by the University of Twente/ITC team, the STARS project was (implicitly) well-represented. Judging from the networking activities ongoing for all of the week in and around the session rooms, the conference can certainly be considered a resonating success.


We hope you will enjoy reading the news items this month. Obviously, we are keen to hear back, either on the topics presented in this issue, or on topics that you feel have not been sufficiently addressed. So do not hesitate to send us your feedback. If you enjoy reading the newsletter and you would like to read earlier editions, please check out our newsletter archive

You can keep yourself informed on what is happening around STARS by visiting the news section of our website, and by following us on Facebook and Twitter

Happy reading to all of you,


The STARS team

 
STARS Landscaping Study

STARS Landscaping Study

One of the main components of the STARS project is the Landscaping Study. It aims to determine how remote sensing can support agricultural development and alleviate poverty. It has a broader perspective than the three regional uses cases which form the other main components of the STARS project. The report of this study is available now!

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How to identify real and viable opportunities for agricultural development?

How to identify real and viable opportunities for agricultural development?

Find out what the main questions were that were used to guide the analysis of opportunities for new remote-sensing technologies in the Landscaping Study.

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Designing novel classification approaches for mapping smallholder farms

Designing novel classification approaches for mapping smallholder farms

Reliable crop maps are crucial for informed decision making and to support sustainable farming in smallholder agriculture. Two MSc students are trying to find smart solutions to produce better crop maps.

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Sentinel-2B satellite showcased in the Netherlands

Sentinel-2B satellite showcased in the Netherlands

ESA's Sentinel-2B satellite was showcased in the Netherlands and will soon be shipped to Kourou, French Guiana where it will be launched in spring 2017 on a Vega rocket from Europe’s Spaceport. Information from the Sentinel-2B mission is helping to improve agricultural practices.

read more...
 
 

Events

STARS appearances

  • 24 - 28 October 2016: 11th International Conference of The African Association of Remote Sensing of the Environment (AARSE), Kampala, Uganda. The University of Twente/ITC organized a special session on smallholder agriculture.
  • 25 - 28 October 2016: ARF workshop in Benin on enhancing research impact for food security. In synergy with STARS, the same consortium members are developing a smartphone app that will allow farmers to estimate ground cover in the context of an ARF project.
 
 
 
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