Satellite Images and Data

Online Course



  1. The Need to Classify Land Use and Land Cover (Chapter 12)
  2. Natural Hazards (Chapter 13)
  3. Meteorology, Oceans, Oil and Mineral Exploration (Chapters 9 - 11)
  4. Understanding Landsat and other Remote Sensing Data (Chapters 1 - 5)
  5. The Use of Remote Sensing Data in the Construction of Useful Images: Military Strategy, Urban Planning, Pollution Tracking, etc.
  6. Case Studies

A satellite image of Hurricane Bonnie

Unit 3 -- Meteorology, Oceans,
Oil and Mineral Exploration

"For many environmental applications, remote sensing is the best means of acquiring basic information, particularly on a regional scale and repetitive schedule."

Summary of Chapters in This Part
Chapters 9, 10, 11
  Remote sensing can be used for many different applications. It is being used to predict the weather, understanding many different aspects of the ocean, monitoring waste and oil spills, measuring rainfall and wind patterns.
  Remote sensing is also being used  for oil and mineral exploration. Images can be used to map mineral deposits and discover new places that contain oil deposits. Remote sensing has played an important role in discovering oil in places like Sudan using the Landsat MSS images. Many different types of highly sensitive remote sensing techniques are being used to find new mineral deposits in places that are difficult, such as vegetated areas that contain rock.
  Remote sensing can be applied to and aide many different areas by providing highly specific and detailed images.
Useful Outside Links, Readings, etc.
A site that provides images of different types of Thermal IR satellite data and what each different image is used for. The site also has good links to other types of remote sensing weather imaging.

A page that provides detail about Seasat and also contains Seasat images to view.

A brief article about how RADARSAT images were used to find an oil spill that was taking place.  The article also provides a RADARSAT image  and a brief explanation of what you are seeing in the image.

A article about the advances the remote sensing has made in the area of oil exploration.

The Landsat Program: an article about the Landsat program and the advances it had made for people, such as geologists and meteorologists.

A page about the remote sensing system and what is had done for mineral exploration in Australia.

Guiding Questions

With all the capabilities of remote sensing data, can you think of the different reasons why it is used to aide the threat of environmental pollution? How is it able to aide that threat?

What are some of the different purposes and benefits to using Thermal IR images for ocean research?

After learning about some of the many advantages to using remote sensing data, can you think of some possibly new areas of research perhaps in your work or everyday life where remote sensing data would be useful to have?

Some types of remote sensing data images can be combined together to create a more detailed image. Can you think of some  of the examples from this unit where that technique might be useful and why?