The extensive mapping of vegetation and its condition form key elements of programmes aimed at the development of national and international food policies. Whilst ongoing research studies the more detailed biophysical processes.
Year-old Proba-V charting global greenery
07 May 2014
A year after its launch, ESA's Proba-V is set to make a giant leap for a minisatellite: formally taking over the task of continuously charting our planet's global vegetation.
For 5880 days - 16 years in all - the Vegetation cameras on France's full-sized Spot-4 and Spot-5 satellites have been monitoring plant growth across Earth, compiling a new global map every two days.
Scientific teams around the world use these sensors to predict crop yields, chart the progress of drought and desertification, pinpoint deforestation and improve climate change models.
But Spot-4 stopped operating last year and Spot-5 is nearing the end. The torch will shortly be passed to Proba-V, ESA's latest minisatellite, launched on 7 May last year.
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