Observational Products for End-Users from Remote Sensing Analysis
Started in April 2021, the Observational Products for End-Users from Remote Sensing Analysis (OPERA) project at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory collects data from satellite radar and optical instruments to generate three products:
- a near-global Surface Water Extent product suite,
- a near-global Surface Disturbance product suite, and
- a North America Displacement product suite.
The first is generated from synthetic aperture radar (SAR) and optical data. The second is generated from optical data only. The third is generated from Interferometric SAR data. These products can be accessed through the links on our data products page.
The OPERA data products and time series are derived from measurements made by the instruments onboard the Sentinel-1 A/B, Sentinel-2 A/B, and Landsat-8 satellites, to be augmented by the measurements from the radars on the soon-to-be-launched NISAR and SWOT satellites.
The project is sponsored by NASA in response to the needs identified by the Satellite Needs Working Group (SNWG). SNWG was chartered in response to the joint Office of Management and Budget (OMB) and Office of Science and Technology Policy (OSTP) request to address challenges faced by US federal data-providing agencies in obtaining and aggregating space-based observations to meet the needs of their users. Every two years, the SNWG conducts an agency survey to identify gaps in the current NASA program of record and/or data sets that meet agency needs. In the 2018 biennial agency survey, surface water extent, surface disturbance, and surface displacement were identified among the top ten inter-agency needs.