Remote Sensing

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Overview

The growing availability of geospatial data and knowledge allows for increased understanding of agricultural and natural environments. Davids Engineering employs remote sensing and GIS analysis to improve the accuracy and precision of data and to increase understanding of spatial and temporal variability in water use and other characteristics of agricultural and natural resource systems.

Energy Balance Modeling of Evapotranspiration

Consumption of water by crops and natural vegetation often represents the largest outflow of water from irrigated and natural systems. Davids Engineering employs energy balance modeling utilizing multispectral satellite imagery to quantify actual evapotranspiration rates across the landscape over time. Energy balance modeling using the SEBAL and METRIC models is a state-of-the-art technique that has been extensively validated in the U.S. and worldwide.

Root Zone Water Balance Modeling

Quantifying water use and return flows over time is a key aspect of understanding and evaluating the hydrologic effects of irrigation management practices on surface water and groundwater systems. Davids Engineering applies proprietary and public-domain numerical models to simulate the processes of irrigation and drainage at scales ranging from individual fields to entire irrigation districts or regions. In particular, Davids Engineering has developed methods to incorporate low-cost satellite imagery analysis into spatially-distributed water balance models to develop time series data of irrigation demands and return flows to support the management of surface water and groundwater supplies.

Delineation of Irrigated Lands

Other analyses Davids Engineering provides include delineation of cropped and irrigated areas within particular areas of interest. Such delineations may be based purely on remotely sensed data or, where high reliability is required, a combination of remotely sensed data and field validation and model training. The resulting data support evaluations of changes in land use and water demand over time, including monitoring of the response of agricultural and natural systems to drought and water supply curtailments.