Convener: Tyler Erickson | Co-conveners: Andrea Nicolau, David Saah
Thu, 07 May, 19:00–20:00 (CEST)

While Synthetic Aperture Radar (SAR) remote sensing with its weather independence and day-and-night capabilities has long been identified as a useful data set for many science disciplines, it is only due to a number of recent developments that SAR has also become an attractive resource for practitioners and decision-makers in areas such as disaster management, agricultural monitoring, water resource management, and ecosystem sustainability.

New sensors such as Sentinel-1 and the upcoming NASA-ISRO SAR mission (NISAR) are or will provide free and open access to global SAR data with frequent revisit rates. New software and processing algorithms are providing value-added products that come fully geocoded and in easy to read data formats. All of these changes have led to increased demand for SAR data and to a vast diversification of the SAR user community. They have also resulted in a pressing need for a more diverse library of training resources, webinars, and curricula. This is particularly true for the applications and decision-making communities, whose information needs are not well met by currently available training materials.

Building on these identified needs, this town hall follows up on the recent AGU TownHall ( and seeks to solicit open discussion on key topics:
* Is more capacity needed in processing raw SAR data vs. starting with “Analysis Ready Data” products?
* Is there really a difference between SNAP vs. GAMMA processing?
* What type of computing infrastructure is necessary? (Local development vs. HPC vs. Cloud)
* Is the current set of available learning resources sufficient, and if not what changes are needed?
* What is preventing the remote sensing community from using SAR for operational applications? What are more pressing limitations, data or processing capabilities?

A diverse panel of experts representing four important components of capacity building (1 research; 2 - infrastructure; 3 - end user applications; 4 - curriculum development) will guide a town hall conversation about topics/needs raised by audience participants. The goal of this town hall is to identify the next steps necessary for the increased applied use of SAR. Input collected from this town hall will inform future capacity-building efforts in this important and rapidly growing earth observation field.

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