30/10/19

Synthetic Aperture Radar (SAR) Remote Sensing for Environmental Monitoring at the WITS Rural Facility

Course participants and instructors at the SAR Remote Sensing course at the WITS Rural Facility. (© Christian Berger)

Our first summer school on the Basics and Applications of Synthetic Aperture Radar (SAR) Remote Sensing for Environmental Monitoring took place from 23 to 26 September 2019.

This course brought together 13 participants from four different southern African countries to the WITS (University of the Witwatersrand) Rural Facility in Acornhoek, South Africa. The approach of the four-day training was to use a mixture of theory lessons with corresponding practical tutorials. These were related to Sentinel-1 time series data (backscatter intensities) and their analysis with open source software (e.g. ESA’s SNAP toolbox, SARbian OS).

To make sure that all participants had some background knowledge about SAR remote sensing, they were asked to complete an online course "Echoes in Space" from the EO College in advance to the course.

Lead teachers of the SAR course included Professor Iain Woodhouse from the University of Edinburgh and Professor Christiane Schmullius from the Friedrich Schiller University Jena (FSU). Practical tutorials were run by Dr Clemence Dubois, Dr Marcel Urban and Dr Christian Berger (FSU Jena), who was responsible for course coordination.

According to the overwhelmingly positive feedback and high number of applications, there is high demand for this course, and we are happy to announce that it will be repeated in 2021 - watch this space!

This course was funded by the BMBF (German Federal Ministry for Education and Research) via our SPACES II Integrated Training and Knowledge Exchange Programme. For more course opportunities in the fields of remote sensing, modelling, greenhouse gas observations and other topics, check the web portal here.