NASA Harvest News
Producing 1/6 of the United States' corn and 1/7 of the nation's soybeans, Iowa is an agricultural powerhouse. This production translates to just under 23 million acres of land planted between the two crops for the 2020/21 season.

On August 10, 2020 this valuable cropland was stressed by a series of intense windstorms known as a derecho. With crops damaged over almost 1/3 of the state, quick and accurate information on the disaster became a top priority.

NASA Harvest responded to the crisis, utilizing synthetic aperture radar (SAR) satellite imagery to quickly evaluate conditions on the ground with analysis showing just under 2 million acres of corn and 600,000 acres of soybean damaged by the storm.

NASA Harvest's Dr. Mehdi Hosseini and Program Director Dr. Inbal Becker-Reshef recently spoke with Planet Watchers about this effort and the benefits that Earth observation technology brings to informing responses to disasters like the 2020 derecho.
NASA Harvest Partner Dr. Sergii Skakun recently co-authored a paper describing a new methodology for estimating agricultural wildfires in Ukraine. Dr. Skakun and his co-authors' novel method uses open-access EO data and estimate >30% more fires than previous EO-based methods and 95% more fires than ground-based surveys.
PCM's annual report includes a number of discoveries from their work with local farmers in the US Midwest, including: an analyses of the most profitable strategies for corn and soybean production, tillage application data and recommendations, nitrogen application information, and an evaluation of corn and soybean cover cropping.
Working with GEO's JECAM team, NASA Harvest's Dr. Mehdi Hosseini and Program Director Dr. Inbal Becker-Reshef recently developed a EO-based model for estimating agricultural leaf area index, a measure of crop productivity. Using only one predictor variable, the simplified model compared favorably with more complex models. Tested in various crop types and locations around the world, this method shows great promise for predicting crop productivity.
NASA Harvest Partner Dr. Kaiyu Guan has been named one of 31 Finalists for the 2021 Blavatnik National Award for his work utilizing arth observation data and machine learning to improve agricultural carbon, water and nutrient management. Dr. Guan’s creation of a 20-year dataset enabling daily snapshots of global farmland has allowed for improved historical modeling as well as current monitoring of agricultural environmental impacts and carbon emissions. 
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Upcoming Events
The International Society for Photogrammetry and Remote Sensing (ISPRS) will be hosting its 2021 Congress online this year. The meeting convenes every four years and provides a platform for Society members, as well as other PRS researchers by invitation, to present recent advances in the field. Delayed from the initial 2020 meeting, the 2021 meeting has gone virtual. NASA Harvest’s Mehdi Hosseini will be presenting on Harvest’s efforts analyzing crop conditions post-Iowa derecho in August 2020. Visit the ISPRS website for additional meeting information.
IGARSS 2021 Symposium will focus on crossing the borders that exist between countries and research institutes; different collection platforms; data sources; and disciplines. In an attempt to increase accessibility, IGARSS has created an online platform that will run concurrently with the in-person events in Brussels. More info can be found here.
SERVIR Amazonia is hosting a series of talks focusing on women in the geospatial workspace. The series includes three webinars between June and August. The first meeting took place in June and focused on women in leadership positions in geospatial organizations. Upcoming talks will cover "Perspectives from Indigenous Women" (July) and "Networking and Mentoring Approaches" (August). In addition to the webinars, S has created a self-paced online course covering technical and "power skills" training. A competitive in-person fellowship for 2022 is also available with applications opening soon. Information on the webinar series, online course, and fellowship can be found on the SERVIR Amazonia project site.