Member Corner

Space and remote sensing news from Esri

The latest news on Skytec selecting Esri technology to power their precision conservation management application, and Orbital Insight’s Integration with the ArcGIS platform to streamline satellite and sensor imagery analysis.

WGIC Secretariat December 9, 2021
Skytec Selects Esri Technology to Power New Precision Conservation Management Application

Skytec is a Chattanooga, Tennessee-based geospatial and remote sensing firm. Skytec’s Ranger app uses aerial drones and satellite imagery. This way, it remotely monitors a subscriber’s property from above. It’s a new app that can manage conservation plans and verify corporate environmental promises with clear imagery. Esri powers it with ArcGIS Image for ArcGIS Online. The Ranger app provides notifications when changes emerge. This is without the costly expense and time spent for on-site monitoring. In a press release, Skytec Chief Technology Officer Andrew Carroll comments on the partnership. ArcGIS Image for ArcGIS Online has given us more time to focus on what we do best—analysis—rather than having to stand up the infrastructure operating behind the scenes. With Esri, those secure back-end systems are built in.”

“Know the precise impact of your efforts”

The technology from Redlands, California-based Esri, processes and securely stores the imagery powering Skytec’s Ranger app in the cloud. “Being able to understand and accurately measure success is half the battle in conservation. This app allows users to know the precise impact of their efforts.” Jack Dangermond, Esri founder and President continued: “Skytec created the kind of sustainable solution our world needs to solve urgent climate concerns, and we’re pleased to partner in providing the tools to help the firm grow.”

ArcGIS Image helping Ranger

Through Ranger, customers choose how frequently they receive timed reports showing activity and highlighting changes on the areas they want monitored. Customers might want more information about a change event. They can order higher-resolution satellite or drone imagery captured with lidar or send their own staff to observe in person. Those choices are then coordinated through Esri’s ArcGIS Survey123 application. Right now, Ranger is monitoring more than 100,000 acres across the country with help from ArcGIS Image for ArcGIS Online. Among its clients are the Palmer Land Conservancy and the Hudson Highlands Land Trust.

Skytec wants Ranger to be a global solution to climate change

Skytec CEO Bill Rogers and Carroll started the company as commercial drone operations began to take off, by monitoring small sites with unmanned aerial vehicles before expanding to include piloted flight observations. Now, with satellite imagery from Planet, Skytec wants Ranger to be a global solution to climate change by providing macro views of land showing if conservation strategies are working. “We’re anticipating clients’ needs for seamless monitoring at any level of any location around the globe,” Rogers said. “This service is beneficial for clients in a variety of industries, from natural resource management to environmental mitigation firms and utilities.”The application also has the potential to prove an entity has kept its environmental promises.

Fill the data science needs

“There’s an opportunity to begin to come in and fill the data science needs that are behind corporate sustainability initiatives,” Carroll said. Monitoring can show mitigation measures, where growth has occurred, and, when appliocable, recovery. It can also monitor for carbon offsets and ecological ecosystem banking. “Everyone’s talking a great talk, but where’s the data behind it,” Carroll said of what Ranger provides. The Ranger application, built with Esri’s ArcGIS Web AppBuilder, is optimized for desktop and tablet use. The partnership with Esri also gives Skytec and its Ranger customers access to the mapping leader’s extensive library of online data, including its ArcGIS Living Atlas of the World, and a seamless experience for existing Esri users.

Orbital Insight integrates with Esri’s ArcGIS Platform

Bahamas Destruction Visualized in ESRI ArcGIS. Picture courtesy Orbital Insight

Orbital Insight is a geospatial software and analytics company. Customers include Unilever, Airbus, RBC Capital Markets, The World Bank, and the U.S. Department of Defense. They use Orbital Insight’s self-service analytics platform to make smarter business decisions, build sustainable supply chains, and improve national security. Customers of Esri who also use Orbital Insight GO can now seamlessly work between both systems. This will make it easier to meet spatial challenges. Esri basemap visualizations go directly within the Orbital Insight GO platform and users export their analysis to ArcGIS. Orbital Insight’s fusion of multisensor geospatial data and state-of-the-art algorithms has been helping customers address critical concerns for years. From determining the flow of container ship traffic amid unprecedented supply chain delays to visualizing dynamic intelligence and defense-related threats and anomalies across the globe.

Cohesive and natural

The integration with Esri’s ArcGIS Platform provides an integral reference point for analysts. Furthermore, it gives them a more cohesive and natural user experience. The companies have planned more collaboration, eventually including incorporating Esri’s geocoding technology into Orbital Insight GO. “We are proud to share with Orbital Insight the common goal of helping people make important decisions on a worldwide scale by taking a geographic approach,” said Jack Dangermond. “It only makes sense to make that process easier, so our users can focus on what they do best.”

Importing and exporting data between Orbital Insight GO and ArcGIS

Orbital Insight uses artificial intelligence (AI) to synthesize multiple sources of geospatial data. These include satellite images, mobile location, connected cars, and Internet of Things (IoT) devices. They all go into this unified platform that can identify objects. Or it detects anomalies. It observes changes in land use, infrastructure, and human activities across the globe. Orbital Insight executives recently demonstrated the new streamlined user experience at the US Geospatial Intelligence Foundation’s annual GEOINT Symposium for industry professionals. There, they were showing the ease of importing and exporting data between Orbital Insight GO and ArcGIS.

Similar and overlapping sets of end users

“Making that seamless was a really big hit,” said Jens Tellefsen. He is Senior Vice President of product and design for Orbital Insight. currently top security military networks that have long used Esri software, also deploy GO. Companies across commercial sectors, particularly real estate, financial services, mining, and consumer packaged goods, are also using it to monitor changes globally. “We serve similar and overlapping sets of end users, and they often combine and visualize our analysis in the ArcGIS system,” continued Tellefsen. “With our partnership, we have added ArcGIS basemaps in our application to provide a consistent user experience. With our native ArcGIS data support, users can now easily add our analysis directly into ArcGIS with a few simple clicks, resulting in significant productivity improvement for geospatial analysts.” The increasing customer overlap between the two companies was a primary driver for Orbital Insight to adopt ArcGIS Platform.
ArcGIS Platform