Watching the Blue Oval
The article "America's big car firms face lengthy strikes“, in the Sept 20, 2023 edition of the Economist, contains a helpful summary of the drama unfolding in the motor city. One of the primary flashpoints in this brewing conflict is the effect that state subsidies are having on corporate investment in the area of electrification. Because electric drivetrains contain significantly fewer subsystems the unions are concerned with the impact this transition will have on the labor force. One of the benefits of satellite radar data is its unique ability to observe events unfolding on earth at a regular frequency of observation regardless of weather. Ford recently announced that the automaker has paused construction on a battery manufacturing development in Marshall, Michigan just about 170 km west of Detroit. Union leaders and politicians, alike, are wondering what this new development means as it pertains to the future of car-making in Detroit. Is this a veiled threat to move more manufacturing into less union-friendly territory? Is this a sign to government leaders that Ford does not see a future where the UAW status quo and electric vehicle mass manufacturing can coexist? The Ford Blue Oval battery site will be an interesting location for regular observation over the next few months. Is development really suspended? Have all the pieces of heavy equipment moved off site? These clues might help decision-makers get a better handle on Ford's long-term intentions with the site and ultimately the future of the company. A 10km x 10km product for $10 an observation through our website is likely the least expensive way to reliably keep up with the latest ground truth. Sign up today to start seeing the world with new clarity.
1.72 Billion
Since the start of the Sentinel 1 mission, the satellites have collected a total of 1.72 billion “scenes” as we describe them in our platform. That’s right. 1.72 billion opportunities to put a pretty graphic at the top of a blog post and then let poetic words flow down beneath it. The Sentinel 1 SAR constellation was designed to collect every square kilometer of the Earth’s land mass every 12 days. Typical commercial SAR imagery collections are somewhere between 25 km² to 250 km² a scene, depending on the desired product resolution. By processing Sentinel 1 phase histories as though they were typical commercial products (10km x 10km) we can create the equivalent of 1.72 billion historical high-quality snapshots documenting the history of our planet going all the way back to 2014. While 1.72 billion blog posts seems a bit excessive to keep readers entertained, we hope to provide a few geographical stories derived from our processed imagery every month to help showcase the art of the possible with this new data source. If you have ideas for some content that you'd like to see up on a blog post please send a note to We are always looking for interesting ways to see the world with new clarity.
What is Radarography?
If, upon seeing the name of this website, you quickly ran a google search on the word “radarography” I suspect you are not alone. Yes, the word is made up, and, yes, it does sound confusingly similar to radiography, a type of medical imaging. All of that said, our team is very proud of the unique radar image formation workflow we have put together that drives this site. So much so, we believe that it warrants the invention of a new word to describe the data experience that our capability unlocks. The purpose of this website is to allow users to look back in time at the changing geography of our planet through the lens of very powerful and proficient radar satellites, the Copernicus Sentinel 1 mission. While there are many tools already in existence to visualize Sentinel 1 collections, our goal was to make Sentinel 1 data accessible to the average web-surfer looking to gain a few new insights on geographic places that are important to them.