Home ITCGlobal impactOWAS1S - Optimizing Water Availability with Sentinel-1 Satellites

OWAS1S - Optimizing Water Availability with Sentinel-1 Satellites

What's the Master's Geo-information Science and Earth Observation about?
TimelineFrom July 2015 to 1 July 2019
ThemeWater management
Funded byStichting voor de Technische Wetenschappen (STW)

Many deltas around the world experience increasing pressure on their water systems as a result of changes in supply and demand caused by socio-economic developments as well as climate variability. The grand challenge for regional water managers worldwide is to optimize the amount of water available for all functions according to their respective needs by either retaining or draining water. Indispensable for skillful management of these water systems are reliable up-to-date information on the current situation and models to evaluate the impact of control measures.

The European Sentinel-1 Satellite programme provides a unique opportunity for operational monitoring the water availability from space at unprecedented spatial and temporal resolutions. The project Optimizing Water Availability with Sentinel-1 Satellites (OWAS1S) stands for innovative integration of the freely available global Sentinel-1 satellite data and local knowledge on soil physical processes for optimizing water management of regional water systems by providing spatial information on the surface soil moisture and value-added products, in particular, crop water availability and field trafficability.

The OWAS1S project accommodates three PhD positions focusing on (1) the exploitation of the freely available Sentinel-1 imagery, (2) the translation of surface soil moisture data to the value-added products, and (3) the optimization of operational and strategic water management using spatiotemporal information. The close cooperation with users from knowledge institutes, public and private sectors aims at developing a sustaining application of Sentinel-1 data for operational water management.

Regional soil moisture monitoring networks


Field bearing capacity

Carranza, C., Benninga, H. J., van der Velde, R., & van der Ploeg, M. (2019). Monitoring agricultural field trafficability using Sentinel-1. Agricultural water management, 224, [105698]. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.agwat.2019.105698

Contact persons

dr.ir. R. van der Velde (Rogier)
Project leader
dr. D.C. Chavarro Rincon (Diana)
Project officer
Global impact
Water management

Many of the world’s major environmental concerns have to do with water. Potable water is getting increasingly scarce, which makes it a valuable resource to be managed wisely. Extreme weather causes excessive flooding which can often be prevented with proper by interventions. Pollution of valuable water resources and the status of precious wetlands deserve close monitoring.

Show more