UMBRA generates 16-centimeter-resolution synthetic-aperture radar image from its commercial satellite

Aug. 8, 2023
Company says it is the highest-resolution commercial satellite image ever released.

SANTA BARBARA, Calif., - Umbra, a company specializing in advanced space radar technology in Santa Barbara, California, announced that it has produced a 16-centimeter-resolution Synthetic Aperture Radar (SAR) image, which it says is the highest-resolution commercial satellite image ever released. The company also announced that it's now able to provide customers with the highest-quality data its satellites are capable of capturing — in all formats and resolutions, including complex data better than 25 cm, for the first time.

Umbra's ability to expand its data product offerings for commercial customers is a direct result of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) removing the temporary licensing conditions under which Umbra previously operated.  Following the NOAA licensing update Umbra added 25-cm imagery with the newly unlocked phase history data into the Open Data Program.

"The removal of the temporary license conditions by NOAA is impactful news for both Umbra and our customers," said Gabe Dominocielo, Umbra's co-founder and president. "This means that we are finally able to offer customers the highest resolution images that our satellites are capable of capturing, setting the stage for even further expansion of products to customers."

Umbra offers single-looked spotlight mode at a 25-cm and 35-cm resolution, as well as 50-cm, 1-m resolutions, and multi-looked spotlight modes, which features longer dwell times to reduce speckle and aid visual interpretation. All of Umbra's spotlight products can be delivered with GEC, SICD, SIDD, and CPHD formats. Umbra data is also provided with a Creative Commons license, which means users can do anything they want with it, as long as they credit Umbra as the source.

Umbra provides access to the highest quality commercial satellite data available, which is a useful tool for the growing number of organizations monitoring the Earth to make data-driven decisions that address global issues. Umbra's constellation is able to identify and monitor surface-level changes globally, and can be used for a variety of efforts, including remote wildlife habitat protection, pollution and plastic waste tracking, oil spill detection, military intelligence gathering, live flooding estimation during storms, and more.

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