[MUSCATE News] Processing of Sentinel-2B L2A products begins


ESA declared Sentinel-2B operational at the beginning of October, although preliminary data were already available. Since this morning, MUSCATE is producing and distributing Sentinel-2B Level 2A products using the MAJA processor (the L2A products are expressed in surface reflectance after atmospheric correction and are provided with a good quality cloud mask). The current production starts from the first of October 2017 and will go on in real time, and we will progressively add the Sentinel-2B products acquired since July 2017.


First S2B products available for download from https://theia.cnes.fr


As always, the data can be freely downloaded from https://theia.cnes.fr


Here is a little example of time series of iimages acquired over Baotou, China, alternatively by Sentinel-2A and Sentinel-2B, here again, the images look the same, except where something has clearly changed on the ground, in the east-west irrigarted valley in the image center.

Sentinel-2A Sentinel-2B Sentinel-2A


As MAJA processing is multi-temporal, its accuracy will benefit from the doubled repetitivity of acquisition, which should have an effect on our validation results. Using the production we did to check our  parameters, we have already checked that the reflectances provided by both sensors are quite close, and agree well with in situ measurements obtained with CNES surface reflectance measuring station in La Crau. The results are provided below.

Continue reading

Snow cover in the High Mountain Asia on 13 May 1960

TIROS-1 weather satellite was launched by NASA on 01 April 1960. It took the first weather satellite picture on 02 April 1960 [1], and also the real first weather satellite picture on 01 April 1960 [2].
On 02 April 1960 it took what I believe is the first publicly available satellite picture of the snow cover in the Alps (picture 1 below). On 13 May 1960 it captured a stunning view of the snow cover over the High Mountain Asia, including the Himalayas, Hindu Kush, Pamir and Karakoram ranges. These pictures are shown in the TIROS-1 final report [3].

Continue reading

Enneigement des Deux Alpes en octobre 2017

Le 13 octobre on apprenait que le glacier des 2 Alpes n'ouvrira exceptionnellement pas à la Toussaint. Une décision prise en raison de précipitations insuffisantes et des températures élevées cet automne. J'ai fait tourner la chaîne Let-it-snow pour jeter un coup d’œil aux conditions d'enneigement. Hier Theia a mis à disposition l'image Sentinel-2A acquise mardi 17 octobre par temps clair. Voici le résultat :

Carte de l'enneigement le 17/10/2017 dans le domaine de ski d'été des Deux Alpes (en bleu cyan superposée sur le fond de carte OpenStreetMap)

Continue reading

Yellow skies look grey from above

You must have seen, in the press or social networks, images like these ones, showing yellow skies ( Loup de Bretagne said "Blade Runner skies"). Such a coloured sky was seen in the west of France, then later in England, and further East in the next days.

The Copernicus Atmosphere Monitoring Service, which keeps track of aerosols has also monitored these aerosols and tracked their provenance : is due to the combined presence of dust, ash from forest fires in Spain and Portugal, and humidity brought by the Ophelia cyclone. The IASI sensor on-board METOP satellites has also monitored the gases absorption due those wildfires.


So our question is: how such an event is handled by atmospheric correction software ?

Continue reading

Validation et amélioration des produits Theia Surfaces Enneigées à partir d'images haute résolution

Post préparé par Marine Bouchet pour le blog Kalideos Alpes (version originale)
Les séries temporelles d'images optiques des satellites Sentinel-2 permettent un suivi de la surface enneigée à une résolution spatiale de 20 m tous les 5 jours (en l’absence de nuages). Le CNES et le CESBIO développent, depuis 2015, une chaîne Let It Snow (LIS) pour extraire de façon robuste les masques de neige associés, distribués sur la plateforme Theia.
Continue reading

[Muscate news] temporary slowlyness

Update : MUSCATE is back on track for the real time production, thanks to PEPS return to nominal production, and a better stability of our platform.

Some of you will have probably noticed that Theia production of Sentinel-2 L2A data is quite slow these days, and is not producing all the data it should in real time. The reason is we started to implement a correction to solve the performance issues we had. This correction was tested and qualified during several days, in operational conditions,  but when put in production, turned out to be unstable, due to occasional slowness in CNES cluster which did not happen when the correction was in tests. Moreover, our source of Sentinel2 data, PEPS, was experiencing some difficulties, providing a much reduced number of images.


We are waiting for a correction of the correction (the cause has been found and corrected but needs to be tested), The new version should be installed in less than 2.3 days, as Dilbert (dilbert.com) says. And all the team is very sorry for the delays and the inconvenience it is causing.

Venµs' moon


Well, the audience of our blog is still steady increasing, there is no need to use explicit titles to get more connexions. And although I mainly use space to look down, I do not think the planet has a natural satellite. So why this title ?

The Venµs satellite actually showed us the moon, and not only to provide a nice title in this blog. Our Israeli colleagues from MBT really worked hard to obtain it, as a very good pointing accuracy is needed to image it from a quickly rotating satellite : the moon is far from here !

Continue reading

Quand Venµs nous montre la lune


Non, non, la fréquentation de ce blog n'est pas en baisse au point qu'il nous faille attirer une nouvelle clientèle pour compenser une perte de revenus financiers issus de la publicité. (La fréquentation augmente régulièrement d'ailleurs, mais les revenus financiers sont nuls...)

Le satellite Venµs nous a vraiment montré la lune, et ce n'est pas seulement pour proposer une belle image et un titre accrocheur sur le blog du CESBIO. Nos collègues israéliens de MBT se sont d'ailleurs donné beaucoup de peine pour l'obtenir, car il faut une très bonne précision de pointage pour l'observer : la lune est loin !

Continue reading

Soil moisture maps at a high resolution over Occitania region


Translated from Theia website.

The Theia forges just released a new product based on Sentinel-1 and 2 data. Le "High resolution soil moisture" Scientific Expertise Center, driven by Nicolas Baghdadi, from Tetis lab in Montpellier and Mehrez Zribi from CESBIO, distributes Soil Moisture maps from the French Occitania region at 20 m resolution, produced every sixth day from September 2016 to May 2017.

Soil Moisture maps for 2 Sentinel-1 images from the 19th and 26th of January 2017, over a part of Occitania région. On the 19th of January, the soil is dry with a moisture between 5 and 15 vol.%. After some precipitations, on the 26th of January 2017, moisture increases between 25 and 35 vol.%.