First ag satellite launched
On Jan. 3, Space X launched the first agriculture-focused satellite, EOS SAT-1, which was built by Dragonfly Aerospace and will provide the agriculture and forestry industry with data to advance sustainable practices.
According to a Dragonfly Aerospace Jan. 3 press release, EOS SAT-1 will form the first of a seven satellite constellation in low Earth orbit (LEO) for customer EOS Data Analytics. The remining six satellites of the constellation will be deployed over the next three years.
Dragonfly states images from the satellite will deliver valuable information for harvest monitoring, application mapping, seasonal planning and assessments analyzing soil moisture, yield prediction and biomass level information. The data is expected to help growers reduce carbon dioxide emissions and help to develop sustainable agricultural methods.
Dragonfly notes EOS SAT-1 will provide 44 kilometers swath panchromatic and multispectral imagery across 11 spectral bands to close to one meter resolution – making it one of the most powerful satellites in the LEO.
Dragonfly Aerospace is a leader in providing Earth-observation optical payloads and satellite platforms.
Founded in 2019 by a group of experienced aerospace engineers and lead by CEO and Co-Founder Bryan Dean, the company is based in Stellenbosch, South Africa. Dragonfly’s extensive customer bases includes EOS Data Analytics (EOSDA), NanoAvionics, Spire, UKRI, Zft, EnduroStat, Loft Orbital and Pixxel.
The company’s experienced team has been at the forefront of South Africa’s uniquely successful aerospace industry since the launch of the country’s first Earth-observation satellite in 1999, through to the most recent launches in 2018 and 2022. The team has worked on every South African microsatellite mission and is excited about EOS SAT-1.
“This is a key moment for Dragonfly Aerospace, and we are thrilled to be delivering EOS SAT-1 with a number of firsts – the first imaging satellite designed and built by Dragonfly, the first to be manufactured in South Africa since 2009, the first satellite of the EOS SAT constellation and the first agri-focused constellation in space,” says Dean in the press release.
“This has been an important project for our whole team and has allowed us to demonstrate our capabilities, not just in producing high-performance electro-optical imagers, but in designing and manufacturing a full-imaging satellite system,” he adds. “It’s an amazing feeling to see EOS SAT-1 leave our premises and take the next step in its journey to delivering crucial data, which will have important environmental benefits for our planet.”
Information from the satellite will have important environmental benefits for the planet and help prevent natural habitats from being diminished for crop growth and to maintain biodiversity.
“We look forward to supporting EOSDA with its mission to launch the next six satellites by 2025,” concludes Dean.
Brittany Gunn is the editor of the Wyoming Livestock Roundup. Send comments on this article to firstname.lastname@example.org.