ESA title

Polish company recognised for irrigation service powered from space

The European Space Agency (ESA) has been on a long journey with Wasat, a Polish company which provides geo-information services and IT solutions for agriculture based on satellite data. When the two began their collaboration in 2011, Poland was only a Cooperating Country of ESA. In 2012, when Poland became a full ESA Member State, Wasat and organisations across the country saw their commercial opportunities expand and their fortunes burgeon. 

In January this year, Wasat was awarded a prestigious Gold Medal Award at the POLAGRA International Fair in Poznan, the largest agricultural trade event in Central Europe. This accolade comes on the back of several fruitful projects with ESA in the areas of smart farming, irrigation management and yield optimisation. Wasat received the award for its Irriget service, which enables efficient crop irrigation and was developed as part of a Demonstration Project with ESA under its Business Applications and Space Solutions (BASS) programme. Powered largely by data from ESA’s Copernicus Programme (Sentinel-2 and Sentinel-3), Irriget calculates water balance in a sub-field spatial resolution, enabling more efficient and sustainable water management. As Wasat begins to roll out its service out to more countries, it is set not only to improve the livelihoods of farmers and growers, but to revolutionise agriculture across the globe.  

ESA Technical Officer, Beatrice Barresi, said, “We are delighted to see Wasat receive this accolade for Irriget, thanks to our close partnership and shared technical expertise. Irriget represents a major step forward in crop irrigation, and we hope that it will change the face of agriculture in the years to come.”    

Wasat’s Managing Director, Bartosz Buszke, said, "The technical and financial support from ESA allowed us to develop an innovative service that perfectly matched the expectations of customers. This growing season, more than half of irrigated potato plantations in Poland are using Irriget. In addition, a dry spring has resulted in many cereal farmers subscribing to our service. At present, we are focusing on adjusting Irriget functions to meet specific requirements expressed by producers of various crops in several climatic regions of Europe. In our work, apart from purely business interests, we are highly motivated by users’ satisfaction and the subsequent impressive retention rates." 

Wasat’s success arrived fresh on the heels of ESA’s growing relationship with Poland. In the same year that the country became a full member state of ESA, the country launched its first indigenous satellite, the CubeSat PW-Sat 1. In 2014, backed by ESA, the Polish Space Agency (POLSA) was established, representing the start of a rapid expansion of the country’s capabilities in the aerospace sector. It also marked a major step forward in the pursuit of excellence in space - and on the ground too, through associations and collaborations with a wide range of companies across Poland. 

Wasat is just one of numerous organisations in Poland that have benefitted from the country’s burgeoning activities in space and its membership of ESA. These industry-leading firms are involved in a wide range of activities including capacity building of processors, composite materials, launch technologies, space and ground segment software, space mechanics, spacecraft power subsystems, optoelectronics, optics and sensors, and downstream applications. 

ESA values its close and productive links with member states and its success with Wasat demonstrates how rewarding commercial relationships can flourish as a result and have a lasting real-world impact on Earth. Farmers and growers in Poland were not only invited to be actively involved in the development of Wasat’s Irriget service, but they, together with counterparts across Europe, also emerged as the ultimate winners of the Polish company’s successful relationship with ESA. 

19 June 2023
Last updated at 22 June 2023 - 17:11