Carbomap have developed a new tool for minimising loss to UK forestry based on a satellite measurements that identify where areas of woodland have been blown down during major storm events. Working with the Scottish Government and the Forestry Commission, who were interested in a smarter, more efficient approach to forest monitoring that would reduce existing survey costs through faster recovery of windblown timber, and more accurate yield planning/management.
We have made a demonstration dataset available on Google Earth Engine, for March 2016 to April 2017. You can access this dataset here to explore:
Our method starts with SLC SAR data from the European Space Agency Sentinel-1 satellites, and incorporates a proprietary Machine Learning algorithm using the complex number data in both polarisations.
It is not hindered by cloud cover, or available sunlight, meaning it can operate regardless of the weather. In addition the outputs provide a confidence rating for each area of change. This information allows decision makers to determine whether further action is required efficiently and effectively.