The National Space Science Agency organized a stakeholder workshop to introduce the latest remote sensing applications in the agriculture field, where the workshop was presented by experts from the company “4EI“, which is one of the most prominent international companies leading in the field of supply and analysis of space images and data, and the workshop was held with the wide participation of a number of engineers and specialists in a number of government agencies and academics from various institutions of higher education.

This workshop stems from the National Space Science Agency’s endeavor to upgrade the Kingdom of Bahrain to be among the leading countries in the field of space by building national capacities and sound infrastructure in order to achieve comprehensive and sustainable development and promote space science at the national level through spreading awareness, developing advanced research programs and promoting innovation to keep pace with the development witnessed by the Kingdom and achieve scientific and technical progress in line with the Kingdom of Bahrain’s Economic Vision 2030. The workshop also provided an opportunity for participants to get to know first-hand the concepts of space, its basic sciences and applications in order to pave the way for them to better understand this important sector in their area, to exploit it optimally, which motivates them to carry out scientific research related to the field of space to harness the science of the future to serve humanity.

The workshop began by introducing the principles of remote sensing and its importance, types of sensors, spectral range, image accuracy and methods of analyzing its own data. In addition, the workshop included a detailed explanation of the most important applications of remote sensing to serve the field of agriculture, environment and climate change, and presented a number of vital projects and examples in the Arabian Gulf region by employing images and space data such as studying the health of mangroves, monitoring trees and green areas, and monitoring greenhouse gases that negatively affect climate change. In addition to presenting the advantages of satellite images compared to aerial and lidar images, perhaps the most prominent of which is that satellite images cover large areas in a shorter, more frequent period of time and at a lower cost, which can also be less accurate. Radar satellite imagery known as “SAR Imagery” can also take pictures during the night or during periods of unstable weather such as storms, fog and dust.

“NSSA uses advanced methods of processing images and space data through specialized programs to extract valuable information based on the needs of stakeholders and can also integrate acquired geospatial information with different spatial and spectral accuracy to produce data that contains more detailed information from each individual source,” said Dr. Mohamed Ebrahim Al Aseeri, CEO of NSSA.

“The Agency has carried out many studies and has joint projects with both the National Initiative for the Development of the Agricultural Sector and the Supreme Council for the Environment, serving the field of agriculture and the environment such as the study of vegetation cover, monitoring the health of plants on land, studying the surface temperature of the land and water, counting the population and health of palms, counting the numbers of greenhouses and locating them, participating in providing the cloud platform with data to display geospatial information, and monitoring air quality. The Agency has published many researches in cooperation with higher education institutions in the Kingdom of Bahrain in several areas where remote sensing has been adopted as the main source of information.”

Commenting on the workshop, Ms. Maryam Al Mulla, Chief, Resources & Administrative Services at the National Space Science Agency, said: “At the Agency, we are used to cooperating with various institutions to spread awareness of space science and its applications because of its great importance in achieving the Sustainable Development Goals and creating a sustainable space sector in the Kingdom of Bahrain. This is the fourth workshop implemented by the Agency since the beginning of this year and we look forward to organizing more workshops during this year to raise awareness of representatives of government agencies about the importance of space science and introduce them to the latest technologies used in areas related to their work and in a way that contributes to raising performance levels, improving quality, reducing expenses and obtaining the highest levels of satisfaction from beneficiaries, all of which is in line with the objectives of the government’s work program and with the Bahrain Economic Vision 2030, which we all seek to achieve.”

Ms. Al Mulla added: “The Agency is keen to continue its awareness approach with an indication of the importance of investing in the fields of space science, and its endeavors in this are many and at different levels, where we target with our awareness programs all segments of society and various sectors, and the coming period will include more of these events, God willing, and the concerned authorities are invited to benefit from such workshops to increase the awareness of their specialists in space science and its applications.”

Ms. Maryam concluded her statement by thanking the Executive Management for their unlimited support, all those who contributed to the success of the workshop, and 4EI and its experts for their outstanding efforts, praising the participants for the interaction and keenness to increase modern knowledge.