Satellite support for eco-friendly farming

Published: Sat 12 Dec 2020, 3:12 PM

Last updated: Sat 12 Dec 2020, 5:20 PM

The radar eye of the Cosmo-SkyMed Second Generation satellite (Italian Space Agency and the Italian Ministry of Defense) realised by Leonardo’s companies, captured the Liwa Oasis, located in one of the most inhospitable areas on the planet.

The small farms of Liwa, thanks to sustainable agriculture based on drip irrigation and greenhouses, represent protection from the progress of the Rub’ Al Khali sand dunes and a real wall against desertification.

 “Through the use of space-based technologies, precision farming can improve the yield and quality of crops. This is important for both economic and climate reasons, enabling more efficient and sustainable farming practices while at the same time reducing their environmental impact,” said Luigi Pasquali, space activities coordinator for Leonardo, adding:“By working together, the agriculture and aerospace industries are allowing farmers to produce more while accurately targeting their use of resources, optimising output while respecting the biodiversity of the environment.

For instance, integrated data analysis can help to calculate the right time to irrigate crops, when to sow and harvest and when it really is necessary to use pesticides.

In addition, this can also support productivity by predicting bad weather and allowing the farmer to make plans to avoid damage and reduce waste, such as irrigating before a storm, saving water which is very precious in regions like the Middle East, increasing the farming environmental and economic sustainability.

These factors can reduce the costs of farming and save resources while sustainably increasing the yield and quality of crops, all while respecting the environment.”

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