An end-to-end processing chain for operational optical ship detection using Earth Observation data (Ref 17/22)

Company: Satellite Applications Catapult, Applied Digital Intelligence Team

Location: Harwell, Oxford

Background: Illegal, Unregulated and Unreported (IUU) fishing is one of the greatest challenges facing our oceans today. As many as 1 in 5 fish is caught illegally, costing $23.5 Billion to the global economy annually. The United Nations Sustainable Development Goals highlight the sustainable use of our oceans as a key target. By 2020 the aim is to effectively regulate harvesting and end overfishing, illegal, unreported and unregulated fishing and destructive fishing practices. Maritime surveillance is one technique for monitoring global fishing activity that utilises satellite data, including AIS, and both optical and Synthetic Aperture Radar (SAR) Earth observation data. Whilst algorithms for the detection of ships using SAR are advanced, there is further potential for exploiting optical EO data for the detection and identification of ships. Such analytical approaches include spectral analysis, feature extraction and machine learning.

Project Description: The role of the intern will be to research and implement an automatic processing algorithm for optical ship detection for a variety of data sources, including for example WorldView-3 and SPOT-6 or -7.

Student Specification:

Applicants will need to be numerate, have computing skills, be able to critically evaluate problems, suggest solutions and show initiative in a supervised R&D project.

  • Remote Sensing
  • Image analysis (ENVI or ERDAS Imagine preferred)
  • IDL/R/Python scripting advantageous
  • Some knowledge of GIS
  • Enthusiasm for the technology and the space industry as a whole
  • Aptitude for open and collaborative working
  • Able to temporarily re-locate or commute to Harwell area
  • Numerically and computationally competent

Target courses: Physics, Remote Sensing, GIS, Engineering, Computer vision, Physical Geography, Mathematics and other similar courses.

The Nitty Gritty: 8 weeks fixed-term contract to be agreed with successful candidate but nominally with a start date around 26 June which is also the SPIN Induction day at Harwell. Salary is £1,500 per calendar month. (guide only)

Closing Date for Applications: This role is now closed.

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