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UMD-led NASA Harvest Program Teams Up With CropX to Support Sustainable Agriculture

By College of Behavioral and Social Sciences Staff

NASA Harvest, NASA’s Food Security and Agriculture Program led by researchers in the Department of Geographical Sciences at the University of Maryland, announced yesterday that it is teaming up with Israel-based CropX, a global leader in soil analytics for agriculture, to improve farming sustainability through resource conservation and enhanced crop yields.

Combining CropX soil data monitoring and agricultural analytics with NASA’s network of Earth-observing satellites will empower NASA Harvest to deliver critical insights to governments and farmers around the globe in support of science-driven decision making.

“We are in a constant race to produce and supply enough food in order to feed a rapidly growing global population, with finite land and natural resources,” said Inbal Becker-Reshef, program director of NASA Harvest. “NASA Harvest is dedicated to collaborating with top innovators to make the best possible use of our agricultural land and this partnership with CropX unites our space-led vision with on-farm intelligence and results."

NASA has deployed CropX solutions across a group of alfalfa farms in Arizona to test and fine-tune the algorithms that will become the foundation of nationwide, and eventually global, agriculture insights. Over a one-year period, the pilot program will establish the parameters for water usage estimates, yield prediction, soil quality and land usage assessments based on multiple crop growing cycles.

“Soil health and nutrient management is at the very root of food security and sustainable agriculture concerns and an accurate understanding of what is actually happening underneath the ground is essential,” said Nadav Liebermann, CropX chief technology officer. “Our partnership with NASA Harvest will deliver valuable agronomic insights by connecting critical data at different depths underground and form an expansive network of satellites in space.”

For the full news release, visit bsos.umd.edu.

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