Applied Earth Observation

ECTS: 5 | credit hours: 4


Hon.-Prof. Dr. Günter Strunz

Dipl.-Inf. Ludwig Högner

Dr.-Ing. Thomas Gruber


Recommended: Knowledge on fundamentals of photogrammetry and remote sensing, as it is provided in the module "Introduction to Photogrammetry, Remote Sensing and Image Processing" (BGU48036), and on fundamentals of computer science, as it is provided in the module "Applied Computer Science" (BGU61030)


After the successful completion of the module, the students are able:

  • to know about the most relevant Earth observation missions;
  • to analyze their appropriate fields of applications according to the sensor specifications;
  • to understand the application of remote sensing and GIS techniques for environmental mapping and monitoring;
  • to evaluate the possibilities and limitations of using earth observation for disaster management and emergency mapping;
  • to know the relevant international mechanisms, which are put in place by space agencies world-wide
  • to provide an overview on the main objectives of the European programs COPERNICUS and INSPIRE.
  • to define and develop an idea for an Earth observation application
  • to work like a project for a space agency including all required documentation and reviews.
  • to present the idea and the project results towards a broader audience and to defend the comtent in a discussion.
  • to know the process of developing software and how to use Earth Observation Data;
  • to deal with a large amount of satellite data;
  • to work in teams and to prepare scientific results.


The module consists of the lecture Applied Remote Sensing and the seminar called Seminar Earth Observation Satellite Mission Data Analysis. In the lecture remote sensing sensors, missions, data analyses techniques and applications are introduced, while in the seminar practical work with remote sensing data in form of a project is performed. The topics to be addressed by this module in particular are:

Lecture: Applied Remote Sensing:

  • Earth observation systems and sensors
  • Data processing and information extraction methods
  • Remote sensing applications for environmental monitoring
  • Integration into Geo Information Systems (GIS)
  • Applications of remote sensing in natural disasters management and humanitarian aid
  • Emergency response and early warning systems
  • European Earth Observation Program - Copernicus
  • Infrastructure for Spatial Information in Europe

Seminar: Earth Observation Satellite Mission Data Analysis:

  • Identify an idea for an Earth observation application based on satellite data.
  • Preparation of a project proposal
  • Definition of system requirements
  • Development of a system architecture
  • Software development and implementation
  • Data analysis (real data)
  • Documentation of project
  • Presentation of the project and its result and discussion


  • Lillesand, Kiefer, Chipman (2015): Remote Sensing and Image Interpretation, 7th Edition, J. Wiley, ISBN 978-1-118-91947-7
  • Richards (2009): Remote Sensing with Imaging Radar, Springer, ISBN 978-3-642-02019-3