Week 1: Overview of Optical Earth Observation Technology and Data

A look into the early days of optical Earth observation, and the different types of optical instrumentation and the Sentinel satellites.

Course introduction

Welcome to ‘Earth Observation From Space: The Optical View’. In this course, we will introduce you to the wide range of applications of satellite Earth observation technology. We will focus in particular on the use of data acquired by satellite sensors which use visible light and near infrared radiation – otherwise known as ‘optical’ Earth observation.

Topic 1a - The early days of optical EO

The history of optical Earth observation.

Topic 1b - ‘Remote sensing’ & the light we can see

An overview of the different types and resolutions of optical and multispectral instruments.

Topic 1c - Beyond the visible

Satellites can collect data from particular places, and at particular wavelengths. The areas the satellite can see depend on the orbit, and the field-of-view of the instrument.

Topic 1d - The Sentinel satellites

This topic provides an overview on the Sentinel satellites

Topic 1e - Wavebands and spectroscopy in remote sensing

Wavebands & spectroscopy in remote sensing

Topic 1f - LiDAR

In this topic we look at LiDAR - active optical sensing technology.

Extra Video: Sentinel 1, 2 & 3: summary of technical capabilities

Professor Martin Wooster provides a brief summary of the Sentinel satellites which have been launched so far.

Interactive exercise and test

Week 1 interactive exercise