Objectives of the service
The features that are attractive to customers are the easy access to information on crop development using simple API. Another attractive feature is the visualization tools prepared, that allow for customers to immediately try products and show them to their clients (ex: https://aquafarm.hidromod.com/wms.html and https://aquafarm.hidromod.com/MapViewer/). De fact that customers can see historical date is also valuable. The pre-processing of data for each field is obtained from IFAP Land Parcel Identification System (LPIS), is very practical for customers. However AQUAFARM can ingest customers defined poligons.
AQUAFARM integrates data from satellite, meteorological models, meteorological measurements and plant growth models to provide modelling results about plant and soil. It has versatile interfaces of input and output that allow managing different models and data. AQUAFARM can make this available anywhere in the world. System can also be connected to data been locally collected. AQUAFARM can learn with the historical data on productions, increasing the forecast capacity of AQUAFARM. AQUAFARM can be used by other platforms that distribute information to farmer.
Users and their needs
AQUAFARM will improve access to data and models (which have low maintenance costs and high durability when compared with intensive measurements based services) to support four identified users (Retailers, Farmers Associations, Ministries and Service Providers) that all together will help improve the value chain. With this information, users will gain the possibility of monitoring farms and its production thus improving value chain and simultaneously helping retailers to better control supermarkets’ supply chain by anticipating changes in quantity or quality of production. During postharvest, environment monitoring is also paramount to guarantee that products are subject to optimum climate conditions. On the farmers side it will allow a proactive reaction to stress factors in order to maximize production. On the ministries side it will allow to continuously monitor farmers, helping to solve punctual problems with subsidies.
Portugal, Brasil and the world
Service/ system concept
AQUAFARM Operational System is composed of two main blocks: Satellite processing block and AQUASAFE block:
- Satellite processing block (composed of ESA Free toolboxes) is a very focused block for automatized retrieval and processing of sentinel2 data in the area of interest. Presently this block generates biophysical vegetation status indicators, dynamic cropland masks and cultivated crop type, based on optical data from Sentinel 2.
- Aquasafe is a very vast block for operating measured data (sensors, remote sensing), modelled data (eg, water supply, wastewater, soil/plant/air model, meteorology, etc.) and users (permissions to access data, distribution lists, contacts, etc). AQUASAFE can integrate data from Sentinel 2, meteorological models, meteorological measurements and plant growth models to provide modelling results about plant and soil. The versatility interfaces of input and output of AQUASAFE system allow managing different models and data.
Space Added Value
Sentinel 2 optical data are the corner stone of the system, allowing for the remote monitoring of vegetation. However system can grow to access more detailed satellite data. System can even grow to use drone data, its use becames generalized through platforms like drone deploy that can provide data through a dedicated API.
The service is based on models and local measurements. Models are limited by their input. For example if a soil is not detailed, variations in production due to soil changes will not be modelled. Local ground truth is limited due to its punctual nature. For example if a soil moisture probe is positioned in an area that accumulates water, extrapolations will result in over estimation of available soil water. Satellite data provides a seamless monitoring of the field that is complemented with the high accuracy of ground truth and forecast capacity of the models.
Aquafarm 2.0 has gathered the users requirements and derived the System requirement. ESA and involved customers approved System Requirements in the Baseline Design Review (BDR) meeting, that occurred in 30 of October 2020. This BDR marked the beginning of the development activities design.