ARIEL, soil moisture retrieval by microwave remote sensing

ARIEL is a microwave radiometer that provides remote soil moisture data. What cameras cannot see beyond surface, Balamis sensors can. ARIEL is a non-intrusive method able to effectively retrieve soil moisture data over small and large areas easily. ARIEL can be placed on-board aircrafts, UAVs (Unmmanned Aerial Vehicles) and ground vehicles.
ProSystem prototype demonstration in operational environment.
Prototype near or at planned operational system. Represents a major step up from TRL 6 by requiring demonstration of an actual system prototype in an operational environment.
Testing plan completed
The testing plan and the BRIGAID’s Testing Innovation Framework (TIF) has been rightly applied and finished. The TRL of the innovation has been effectively reached.
Technology has been tested and demostrated in an operational environment, and has passed the BRIGAID's TIF assessment.

How does it work?

ARIEL is a passive microwave radiometer based on the same technology of MIRAS sensor on-board satellite SMOS mission. It measures natural thermal emission at the microwave wavelength of 1.4 GHz, which is strongly related to the content of water in the observed target. It requires a power supply from 12 to 24V, and consumes a max. of 50W. It requires a mechanical interface with the platform to be used on. Its installation takes less than 10 min. in ground vehicles and UAVs, and needs to be homologated in aircrafts. The antenna has to be adapted to existing “holes” for Earth observation in the fuselage, and data is synchronized with other systems using an internal GPS time stamp.