ID Erodible Soil via Satellite Imaging

Satellite imaging of specific indicators of erodible soil will be cross-examined to create a searchable map that identifies locations that have a high risk of erosion

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Tags

  • Iceland

Categories

  • Life on land

Description

 💎 Idea

We would like to develop a way for the identification and detection of landscapes at risk of erosion and degradation. Knowing where the soil is degrading is extremely important, as it allows for mitigating strategies to be better targeted and used where it will matter the most.


We cannot keep going as we are, as we are effectively going about degradation mitigation in the dark.


We have identified good indicators of soil erosion/degradation that can be tracked with data from satellite imaging and local weather data. As part of this, we also want to detect soil that isn't at risk of degradation.


Possible indicators that we could use include:

  • Slopes in the landscape
  • Air Pressure
  • Vegetation cover
  • Average rainfall 


🚀 EU space technologies


The Sentinel 2 satellites have a Multi-Spectral Instrument (MSI) with 13 spectral bands that range from the visible range to the shortwave infrared (SWIR). Bands come in variable resolutions from 10 to 60 meters and their wavelength is determined based on specific purposes. Based on this data we can calculate various vegetation and soil indices such as NDVI, DSWI, NDSI MSVI2, etc. After that we use a combination of spectral indices and statistics analysis to assess the soil erosion risk. Our method is based on the research done in Africa. 


🐴 Local Icelandic Data 

Using an equation developed from the work of Chepil, 1945, Chepil, 1956 and Chepil and Woodruff 1963, a group of researchers acted on the Canadian initiative to apply a factor of risk to land areas around Canada based on soil sampling and computation. We planned to do this and more. With the necessary data from soil sampling around Iceland, we could also use the Chepil equation to calculate the risk of erosion. Our goal is to calculate this risk for the 23 counties of Iceland and represent the data as a colored visual mapping tool showing green for least likely soil to erode, red for most likely soil to erode, and so on. Our next step towards this goal is to measure C, the soil resistance factor to movement by wind, for the different types of Icelandic soils. With time and opportunities to perform wind tunnel tests, we would be able to calculate the C values to use the Chepil equation, thus, calculating the risk of erosion in specific soil types of Iceland.


Check out how Canada did it

 


❄️ Connecting the Arctic

Life on Land. The health of our soil is incredibly important for sustaining life on the land. It not only supports the infrastructure of us humans, but it also supports the livelihood of other animals, as well as acting as a very effective carbon sink that mitigates global warming and its destructive effects.


The Arctic is more vulnerable to soil degradation, as the permafrost and other northern soil contain a vast amount of the earth's carbon. Now that the permafrost is thawing more rapidly, more and more carbon and methane are being released into the atmosphere, resulting in even faster atmospheric warming and thus faster thawing, resulting in even more carbon and methane being released. Thus soil degradation creates a positive feedback loop of global warming.


Team 

Christina G. Rodriguez - 

Entrepreneur / Pre-med Science Enthusiast with a minor in Global Sustainability 

2 years of Grant Funded research on Aquaponics 


Sandra Rós Hrefnu Jónsdóttir - Software engineer most familiar with Golang and Python, systems designer, enthusiast about IoT and distributed systems and programming


Marco Pizzolato - GIS specialist, industrial engineer and environmental activist.


Cecile Chauvat - recently published telecommunication engineer / resource manager who works at Natturustofa Norðurlands Vestra.

Coordinator of an international environmental education project for youth (arcticnature.org)


Filomena Cerniute - Front End developer


Roman Pechenkin - Software Engineer

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