Congratulations to Henrik Fisser, whose Truck detection – Sensing trade from space has been awarded the first prize for the European Data Cube COVID-19 edition of the custom script contest.
The idea exploits reflectance patterns of long moving vehicles, such as trucks, in Sentinel-2 images. While trucks are essentially too small to be recognised as objects within the 10m resolution images, they leave a stretched rainbow reflectance track, whose blue component is particularly effective as a marker of truck presence.
This finally allows for counting of vehicles and quantifying the impact of COVID-19 related restrictions on truck traffic and economic operators activity.
The script and its details are open source and accessible on the GitHub repository.
Henrik is working hard to scale this idea up for inclusion in RACE Dashboard, processing more than two trillion pixels in the past few weeks.
We are eagerly waiting to see follow-up results.
By winning weekly, monthly and an overall prize, Lucky Henry did earn a decent sum, just in time for summer break travels. Hopefully he will be able to enjoy the opportunity as the COVID-19 situation in Europe is improving!