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Summary of Proposal LAN1406

TitleBelgian Collaborative Agriculture Monitoring at parcellevel for sustainable cropping systems - JECAM belgian site
Investigator Leonard, Aline - Universite catholique de Louvain UCL, Earth and Life Institute ELI-e
Team Member
Professor Defourny, Pierre - Universite catholique de Louvain UCL, Earth and Life Institute ELI-e
SummaryThe advent of a new generation of high spatialand temporal resolution satellite sensors (i.e. Sentinel-1, Sentinel-2 andPROBA-V) opens the doors to develop new prototype applications much moreconnected to the so called end-users. In addition, this newabundance of EO information calls into question current environmentalmanagement approaches that have been developed when EO data were notsufficiently available to be used operationally.This researchaims to develop a new collaborative pathway for operational remote sensingmonitoring at the local level. Buildingon the most recent remote sensing and Information and Communication Technology penetration,the research challenge is to completely change the interactions betweeninformation users and producers and to markedly speed up the critical learningprocess for the remote sensing providers thanks to input and near real timefeedbacks from the users. Building on the complementarity of local andsatellite remote sensing technologies, the first research objective is todevelop such a pathway for one of the most dynamic and most widely distributedapplications: crop monitoring. This project, working on a JECAM site andtaking advantage of the BELAIR campaigns, will largely contribute to theGEOGLAM, an initiative supported by the G8.Indeed, in the era of Sentinels and PROBA missions, Belgium is a veryinteresting experimental site to design and test innovative methods for acollaborative information system because of its crop diversity, landscapefragmentation, atmospheric variability, and all the already available datasets. By fully exploiting the red-edge capabilities ofSentinel 2, and the wide and frequent coverage of SAR sensors, Sentinel 1 and 2as well of PROBA-V, 3 different information have been initially identified tobe delivered along the season to the farmers: 1) the provisional annual Nitrogen balance-sheet, 2) the field zoning, 3) the crop Nitrogenstatus before the 3rd application at the parcel level In addition,the overall crop status along the season, the major water stress/pest/diseasesdamages and the yield estimate will be provided at the district level. Existing methods will be applied to Sentinel2 for fAPAR and LAI, to SAR data for biomass while the crop status andintermediate crop mapping will rely on both, combined with Proba-V at 100 m. New or adjusted methods will be developed toderive from the red-edge bands the leaf Chlorophyll a content and then torelate this to the Nitrogen status. Themost original part is to apply the retrieval algorithm for these biophysicalvariables over a large scale (Belgium) in order to identify the main sources oferrors across various agricultural landscapes.A subsequent strategy should discard the poor quality estimates, correctfor the possible bias and communicate the estimate uncertainty to the farmers. This project will also innovate in the cropyield modeling. While currentmechanistic crop growth models were designed for data poor environment, newcrop yield models can capitalize on data rich environment with manymeasurements available on a regular basis.The new model should combine some mechanistic component to avoid beingsite specific, but will take advantage of all available information. The main achievements of this project will beanswering to the three research questions in order to build the belgian systemprototype. While developed and tested ina well-controlled cropping system like Belgium, this is meant to betransportable and applicable to the other JECAM sites and anywhere needed.

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