SAVANT - Satellite Video Analytics for Commodity Traders, Analysts and Planners

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The mining, production and supply of high-value metals such as copper, is a crucial element of the global economy. Up-to-date and accurate information on mining activity, levels of production, and the processing of these vital metals is a critical input into effective monitoring and decision-making for traders, market analysts and investors. Given the global nature of the mining industry and the myriad of strategic locations, from mines to ports to processing plants, geospatial technology is increasingly playing an important role in decision-support.

SAVANT, by Earth-i, monitors a selection of the biggest copper mines, and the world’s most important copper smelting plants, to supply more accurate and timely data to the commodity markets for copper traders, market analysts and fund managers. The Global Copper Index uses Earth Observation data, collected and analysed on a weekly basis, to deliver insights into fluctuations and disruptions in the supply of copper. SAVANT is available through a partnership with Marex Spectron, the world leading broker of financial instruments and information services in the commodities sector and energy markets.

Users and their needs

Commodity traders want to receive regular insights on production levels to guide their trading activities, particularly for regions of the world where information is not readily available or timely, and not specifically tailored to analyst’s needs. Traders and analysts want to improve their understanding of the correlation between market price movements and the physical production and movements of commodities in the world’s supply chains. They want information that is easy to access and integrate into their systems and have confidence in the reliability and accuracy of the data and insights supplied.

SAVANT is a data analytics and insights service, generating and delivering a portfolio of products tailored to specific requirements of clients seeking information on the mining industry, with an initial focus on the copper mining sector. 

* Receive regular, timely and unique insights into the mining sector

* Monitor productivity of the world’s top copper mines

* Monitor 80% of smelter capacity across the world

* Evaluate the impact of events such as shutdowns, upgrades and industrial action on smelters

* Gain a competitive advantage in the trading markets 

A 2012 study published in the Harvard Business Review, found that companies using big data analytics can improve productivity and profit gains by 5%-6% over their competitors. As many important mines and smelters are in remote or inaccessible locations of the world, and scarcity of information poses a challenge to analysts, satellite technology can be the one of the few options available to gain critical insights to support decision-making.

Service/ system concept

The Advantage from Space

Using satellite data, machine learning and AI, SAVANT generates forecasts and predictions of production levels at individual mines, as well as monitors over 80% of the world’s copper smelter activity. It is this timeliness and targetability that gives space-derived services a real edge over the current range of information tools and solutions.

Earth-i performs data analytics based on satellite imagery, and complementary data sources, to provide assessments on the output of raw materials being extracted and processed across the world’s supply chain for copper. 

* Using innovative volumetric assessment techniques based on the analysis of very high-resolution images and video from space, Earth-i monitors heap volumes or mine activity, such as movements of trucks and conveyors and the loading of trains and ships. 

* Capturing regular satellite imagery of the majority of the world’s smelters enables SAVANT to deliver critical insights into over 80% of the world’s copper smelting activity in the form of a Global Copper Index using advanced machine learning and AI techniques. 


Space Added Value

SAVANT uses Earth Observation data from space, in addition to other data sources, to conduct advanced analytics and deliver insights to traders. By utilising a range of Earth Observation satellites to collect data from across the world, the product delivers unprecedented timeliness and targetability that gives SAVANT indices a real edge over traditional sources of data and information services.

Current Status

There has been successful delivery of the SAVANT portal and indices to an extensive and engaged pilot group of end-users.

Following customer feedback, analytics and insights on copper smelter activity has now been rolled out to all pilot users of the SAVANT portal. This has enabled delivery of more in-depth analytics and insights to the users, and the SAVANT portal has received positive feedback from active users.  

The SAVANT Global Copper Index will be launched in partnership with Marex Spectron – a world leading broker of financial instruments and information services to the industry – at an event during London Metals Week on 28 October – 1 November 2019. This event will support the initial commercialisation of the product. 

Prime Contractor

Project Managers

Contractor Project Manager

Ody Mbonu
Earth-i, 10 Nugent Road Surrey Research Park
United Kingdom
+44 7741 641326

ESA Project Manager

Beatrice Barresi
ESA/ESTEC, Keplerlaan 1, PO Box 299
2200 AG Noordwijk

Status Date

Updated: 15 October 2019 - Created: 26 September 2018