The fastest growing application of satellite imagery is in solving real-world problems and challenges for businesses and enterprises across the world. The era of ‘big data’ has opened new opportunities for the application of satellite data, with commercial mapping providing a wealth of information on the flow of trade between nations. Given that satellite constellations can generate vast amounts of spatial and temporal data about the Earth, its resources and human activities, the potential for answering questions from ‘big data’ is infinite.
Very high-resolution satellite data from Earth-i offers the potential to unlock powerful new insights and information solutions for big data analysts. By applying advanced algorithms that interrogate satellite data and correlate it with other big data sources, the pioneers of big data are developing a diverse range of satellite imagery-based solutions. And whilst big data is the buzz, the answers to business problems often lie in focusing in on selected areas of interest, or specific activities in key locations, that provide the insight and intelligence to solve particular problems.
From investors seeking to analyse the performance of growth industries and their activities through satellite imagery, to insurance claims which can best be assessed with remote sensing data, or retailers identifying the optimal locations for new stores, high resolution satellite data can unlock new insights and deliver competitive advantage.
- Economic activity monitoring programmes
- Commodity markets analysis
- GDP analysis and monitoring
- Risk assessment and loss adjustment
- Big data analytics
Coffee is the second most traded commodity in the world and is critical to the economic output of many countries. Using satellite technology, along with mobile apps, the consortium of Earth-i and WeatherSafe work to improve coffee crop yield and quality and to improve the supply chain in developing countries.
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The global insurance industry needs a very large amount of information to support their risk assessments, planning, loss adjustments and claim validations. Having a base map for this information means companies can assess and manage risks such as floods and natural disasters and rapidly build ‘catastrophe knowledge’ when an event occurs. The less investment it takes to do this, the better for everyone.
Successful commodity trading relies upon intelligence, and satellite imagery can reveal new information about a wide range of commodities traded on a global basis. This includes minerals and metals, fuels (oil and gas) and agricultural produce (crops and livestock). Tasking satellites to monitor production and shipping at key locations such as mines, refineries, farms, processing facilities, ports and transportation hubs can provide traders and regulators with critical information on the current state of the market, volumes of production and trade, and stockpiling of key commodities.
Optical satellite imagery is a highly cost-effective method of obtaining insight into any area of interest on Earth. If those areas are large in scale, remote or difficult to access, satellites are one of the most efficient ways of learning more. A typical single image covers hundreds of square kilometres, an area that would cost a fortune in both capital and time to investigate on foot.