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Satellite Eye for Galathea 3

Galathea 3 Expedition
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Environmental monitoring from satellite is among the most important and outstanding technical developments since the last Galathea expedition in the years 1950-52. At the same time the internet has made it possible to publish the satellite images in near-real-time. Furthermore, all Danish schools and most Danish pupils have good access to computers and web connection, such that they can make use of the information in daily school life. The project has the following partners

  • o Risø National Laboroty for Sustainable Energy, DTU, project management
  • DTU Space, Denmark Technical University
  • Danish Meteorological Institute
  • Niels Bohr Institute, University of Copenhagen
  • GRAS

Satellite Eye for Galathea 3 is funded by the Egmont Fonden, ESA and the participating institutes.

By using state of the art environmental monitoring from the environmental monitoring satellite Envisat from the European Space Agency (ESA), it is possible to combine the observations from Galathea 3 both at local, regional and global level..

EDUSPACE is ESA’s homepage for Earth Observation for upper secondary schools education. Within EDUSPACE an image processing software, LEOWorks, has been developed. This enables pupils to visualize and analyse satellite images. Furthermore within EDUSPACE a series of full educational cases for several disciplines with use of satellite images have been produced. EDUSPACE is available in English, German, French, Italian, Spanish and Danish, while translations to Portuguese and Dutch are in preparation.

Through EDUSPACE permission from ESA has been granted to free of cost to use several types of satellite images for the complete Galathea 3 expedition cruise for use in education and research. The images will be delivered in near-real-time, on a best-effort basis.

It includes the following data types

  • ASAR Medium Resolution (75 m pixel spacing) for IM, AP and WS modes
  • ASAR Global Monitoring Mode and Wave Mode
  • MERIS Reduced Resolution (1200 m) Level 1 and Level 2
  • AATSR Level 1 and Level 2
  • METEOSAT products

Diagram for ENVISAT.

Envisat has a total of 16 sensors that at the same time delivers a set of observations. We are making use of the ASAR instrument that records radar images, there among other things can be used to observe sea ice, wave activity and to observe the land surface even though the sky is covered in clouds. MERIS is an optical instrument specifically used to observe the ocean surface and through this map the blooming of algae (phytoplankton), but the data can also be used successfully to give an overview of land surface vegetation. AATSR observes among other things the sea surface temperature. Furthermore we have access to data from the sensor SCIAMACHY that shows the content of the atmospheric NO2 which is a good indicator for modern economical activity.

Data from Envisat are used in 16 research projects on-board the Galathea 3.

Satellite images and observations from the ship are stored in a database useful for education and research.

Diagram of the Galathea 3 image databank in relation to education and other publication.

By coupling observations for the expedition with satellite images, the pupils are presented with state of the art technologies. This is not just a long list of numbers in a table form but comprehensive maps with images visually presented in an up-to-date fashion.

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