CGIS masters student shines at Geomatics Indaba 2016

Posted on October 05, 2016

A masters student at the Centre for Geoinformation Science (CGIS) at the University of Pretoria (UP) shines during the Geomatics Indaba 2016 conference, which was held from the 12 to 14 September 2016 at Emperors Palace, Kempton Park. Geomatics Indaba 2016 had two paper categories, one was for general papers and the second category was for peer-reviewed papers. The peer-reviewed papers are published in the South African Journal of Geomatics as a special issue. Zinhle Mashaba submitted and presented a paper under the peer-reviewed category which was voted the best academic paper at the Geomatics Indaba 2016 conference. The research presented was funded by the Agricultural Research Council.

The paper was entitled: “Evaluating spectral indices for winter wheat health status monitoring in Bloemfontein using Landsat 8 data”. Spectral indices derived from remotely sensed satellite images give an indication of crop vigor early in the season. However, less research has been done on investigating which indices are best related to winter wheat health status in South Africa. The research focused on identifying spectral indices can be used for crop monitoring so that farmers can modify their irrigation programs or applications of fertilisers, pesticides or herbicides to improve wheat growth at stressed areas. This particular application can help to ensure food security as wheat is a staple food for most South Africans. Additionally, farmers can save money on doing manual field surveys because satellite images cover a large area.

Geomatics Indaba is Africa’s leading, inclusive conference, exhibition and training event for the geomatics sector. This conference was attended by local and international experts, with strong support from industry, local universities and the government. Post-graduate students at CGIS constantly participate at this annual event to showcase their projects.

- Author Cilence Munghemezulu
Published by Victoria Rautenbach

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