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Research activities related to the Commission's advanced agricultural information system

The European Commission, DG VI, has published an open invitation to tender for research activities related to the advanced agricultural information system of the European Commission. The tender falls within the framework of Commission project for neural network image classifi...

The European Commission, DG VI, has published an open invitation to tender for research activities related to the advanced agricultural information system of the European Commission. The tender falls within the framework of Commission project for neural network image classification for land cover mapping and covers the provision of the following research activities: - A pilot project on the use of active microwave satellite remote-sensing data for rapid area estimation of agricultural crops: The General-Directorate for Agriculture (DG VI) receives monthly estimates (April - November), in good time, of area variations for 12 economically important crops. The area variation estimates are obtained on the basis of the analysis of satellite remote-sensing data collected over 60 sites in the European Union. The satellite remote-sensing data used are acquired by passive radiometers on board the SPOT and LANDSAT satellites in the optical and infra-red parts of the electromagnetic spectrum. To complement and improve the information obtained on area variations with the optical/IR sensors, DG VI is calling for proposals for the implementation of a pilot project on the use of active microwave satellite remote-sensing data acquired by the synthetic aperture radar instruments which are part of the payload of the European remote-sensing satellites ERS-1 and ERS-2 and the Canadian RADARSAT; - A feasibility study on the use of METEOSAT data within the context of the advanced agricultural information system of the European Commission, including: . Evaluation of the use of METEOSAT data for the estimation of global solar radiation and possibly rainfall at the level of the EU, central and eastern Europe and the Maghreb; . Validation of indicators derived from METEOSAT for areawise crop state and vegetation condition monitoring at national level, EU level and in the central and eastern European and Maghreb regions; - Establishment of a simple regionalized agro-meteorological crop knowledge base for the major crops of the EU, the Maghreb and the central and eastern European regions. The objective of this activity is to construct, on the basis of a literature study and the establishment of contacts with institutions in the various regions (questionnaires, visits), a data base containing sets of simple crop parameters and information needed to run water balance models for the most familiar agricultural crops in Europe (both western Europe and central and eastern Europe) and the Maghreb region; - Provision of validated agro-meteorological models for the estimation, at harvest, of olive and grapevine yield (regional and national level). These models should be included as software modules in the Commission's advanced agricultural information system. Requests for tender documentation should be sent to: European Commission DG VI - Agriculture Mr Saverio Torcasio Unit VI/A-2 200 rue de la Loi B-1049 Brussels Tel. +32-2-2953440; Fax +32-2-2958453