The Earth Observation Industry

Leveraging existing and new asteroid prospecting technologies, Planetary Resources uses hyperspectral and infrared sensors to detect the composition of materials and measure thermographic properties of materials on earth from space.

Planetary Resources is among a number of companies that compete in what is referred as the earth observation business. The idea is to gather new data and insights from space which can then be used back on earth for a multitude of industries. Real-life applications of these technologies can provide for example a better and daily monitoring of cropland to farmers, smarter monitoring of a gas pipeline or instruments that can also help observe a wildfire before it spreads.

The idea is to provide actionable and rich data to a number of industries such as energy, gas & oil and mining. Companies can then use these insights to better forecast and manage their assets on earth. This can in turn help create customized decision-making tools to people for their everyday operations.

Several companies exist in this segment but what they mainly do today is to take photos of earth and try to depict data with it. The issue is that by using the naked eye, the data you gather is not refined enough to provide quality and useful information. Planetary Resources technology “Ceres” helps go beyond normal pictures through hyperspectral and other technologies that they created.

Another element that makes the earth observation business compelling today is the capacity of these companies to offer price points for their services that makes it viable for regular businesses instead of being the guarded domain of governments and other agencies as it was in the past.