A satellite stands on guard
Modern farms are so large, and hail and frost damage can be so localized, that farmers may not even be aware that some of their fields have been affected. But now, Canada's RADARSAT is helping insurance adjustors and farmers more accurately assess every damaged acre. This new data is so precise that farmers interviewed in Saskatchewan are convinced that remote sensing technology can, over time, reduce their insurance premiums.
Exports and spinoffs of Canadian innovation
Once the potential of this field trial has been demonstrated, the project is designed to lead to other commercial applications in the rest of Canada and in the U.S. where crop loss is much greater. One new application would help farmers substantiate insurance claims when excessive standing water from snowmelt or heavy spring rains make it impossible to plant their fields. Space-based remotely sensed data help estimate soil moisture more precisely and help crop insurance agencies evaluate and process claims more efficiently.
Project partners are building on its potential
Digital Environmental Management of Saskatoon specializes in environmental applications of remote sensing technology. The company is working closely with MDA Geospatial Services to offer the first commercial RADARSAT-based crop damage mapping and estimating service for the agriculture and insurance industries.