A collaboration between University of California Santa Barbara (UCSB) and a private company, Terra Image USA, headquartered in Santa Barbara, will have a major impact on research that utilizes satellite imagery, according to UCSB scientists. The partnership agreement was signed at the university recently. This endeavor will enable more than 40 UCSB faculty members, and many more of their students, doing research that utilizes satellite imagery to have virtually unlimited access to high spatial resolution commercial satellite imagery, a research asset that has previously been available to universities in very limited quantities.
Terra Image USA, the distributor for the U.S. market of satellite imagery from the SPOT constellation of high resolution Earth imaging satellites, will benefit from the partnership through the promotion of SPOT data for research and the training of future users of SPOT data. Besides current satellite images, researchers will be able to access archival images as far back as 1986, when SPOT first began collecting images. SPOT images will be useful to UCSB researchers in many departments and institutes, including the departments of: geography; ecology, evolution and marine biology; geology; and computer science. Spot images will also benefit the Map and Imagery Library, the School of Environmental Science and Management, the Institute for Crustal Studies and the Marine Science Institute.