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Satellite Earth Observation to highlight hot spots of damaged forest areas.

From challenges to solutions
The Challenges

Forests are an important economic and ecological resource. Owners and managers need timely information on forest status and changes.

The Idea

We use satellite remote sensing to derive reliable information for forest management.

The Solutions

Our platform-independent services detect changes and give notifications on hot spots.

#Segment: Space    #2018    #Earth Observation    #Machine Learning    #Big Data    #Pattern Recognition    #Infrastructure as Code    #Cloud Computing

The Challenges

Catastrophic storm events, bark beetle calamities, climatic changes, and unsustainable forest management threaten our forests. As a consequence, their socio-economic functions are severely degraded. Forest administrations and owners undertake significant planning efforts and mitigation measures to conserve biodiversity and prevent degradation. They depend on the availability of relevant and timely information on the status and dynamics of our forests.

The Idea

AlpMon exploits latest Earth Observation data and technologies to empower forest owners and forest administration to better manage and protect our alpine forests. We transform satellite imagery into the reliable and evidence-based information that is needed for sustainable management of our forests.

The Solutions

The approach is based on satellite imagery from the Copernicus Sentinel-2 mission in combination with Landsat-8. These two sensors form an ideal basis for the establishment of a large-scale monitoring system of high spectral, spatial and temporal resolution. We create time series of Earth Observation data and develop analysis approaches to detect and classify forested areas and their changes over time.

The novel methods will be integrated and optimized for access through our cluster processing environment. This private cloud computing infrastructure provides ample resources for timely production and delivery of information products.

The Alpmon forest monitoring system comprises two services: A near real time alert system to rapidly map forest changes, and a forest map service that provides improved and updated maps on selected forest parameters.

Both can be accessed with a conventional web browser, thereby being platform and operating system independent.

Service 1

Quantifies forest damage and logging activities in near-real time and is based on time series analyses. We differentiate between storm damage, clear cuts and long-term changes related to insect infestations and deliver the statistics needed for effective forest monitoring and administrative reporting duties. The integration of 3D data, e.g. from airborne laser scanning, for a rapid estimation of the affected timber volume is supported.

Service 2

Exploits our detailed forest maps to improve forest management. It provides high resolution maps of important forest parameters, such as tree species distribution, forest type and tree cover density. Our maps are complemented by open data on land use/land cover.

The web interface allows you to browse through the enormous catalogue of available satellite imagery, investigate our forest maps and integrate them in your local GIS, calculate and download detailed forest change maps, subscribe to forest change alerts, display forest statistics and comprehensive graphs, and easily manage your service subscriptions.


is one of the largest non-academic research institutes in Austria. In Alpmon, Joanneum Research provides the requirements, develops the methodology and workflows.

develops individual software solutions, with a focus on high performance computing and Earth Observation. For Alpmon, they are doing the software solution design, implementation and testing.

provides a private cloud computing environment and archive of Earth Observation data. They will host the Alpmon service during development phase, and after that.

The Vision
  • Are you the owner of a forest or enrolled in forest administration? Are you interested in learning more about your forests and our services?
  • Get in touch with us for your personal and early access to Alpmon!
  • Set up a notification service for your area of interest and get notified once changes are being detected automatically!

Ihr Ansprechpartner

Werner Mücke, PhD

Remote Sensing, Business Development


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