Remote sensing technology provider, 2Excel Geo, has signed up to the national SPRINT business support programme to develop an Earth Observation validation engine for roadside trees. The £5m Space Research and Innovation Network for Technology (SPRINT) funding will enable 2Excel Geo to develop an automated ground validation solution in collaboration with the University of Leicester. This system will analyse airborne and orbital intelligence to identify trees in roadside locations that may be a risk to road users and obstruct Britain’s road network.
“The 2Excel Geo application is centred around the environment and sustainability, aimed at delivering rapid feedback on the status of trees and important elements of the environment,” said Ivan Tyukin, Professor of Applied Mathematics at the University of Leicester. “We’ve been working on how data-driven technology can be used to maintain a stable environment, and this project with 2Excel Geo will be our first large-scale trial of that technology with a human element in the loop. The University is looking to engage with 2Excel Geo on a broader research programme around the environment and the use of satellite data.”
The SPRINT project will combine optical remote sensing with satellite global positioning of data collected from in-car dashboard camera footage to automatically validate tree health classifications derived from Earth Observation data.
“SPRINT funding has enabled us to access the expertise of the SPRINT universities for our research and, by working with the University of Leicester on this particular project, we can apply and assess novel validation techniques. This will open up potentially automatable means of validation support for our application of identifying stressed or diseased trees on the sides of roads, thus helping highways authorities to mitigate potential problems or dangers,” said Gary Llewellyn, Remote Sensing Consultant at 2Excel Geo.
2Excel Geo will also work with SPRINT partner, Satellite Applications Catapult on a Commercialisation Engine Programme that will explore the commercial viability and technical feasibility of 2Excel Geo’s remote sensing solution.
“The Satellite Applications Catapult Business Support team are supporting 2Excel Geo to explore the commercial opportunities of the 2Excel Geo application. We have already completed our first set of business and design sprints and are looking forward to working with the company to further to realise its full ambitions,” said Shannon O’Neill, Business Engagement Executive at the Satellite Applications Catapult.