Enabling Nature Based Solutions to climate change

Space Intelligence turns satellite data into actionable information, helping governments, companies and NGOs worldwide make better environmental decisions.

We’re a fast-growing team working focussed on innovation to support the transition to Net Zero, by enabling the upscaling of Nature Based Solutions to climate change. In October 2020 we were voted the 8th most innovative tech company in Scotland, in the Business Cloud’s Tech Top 50. 

We provide unique maps of habitats, carbon storage and restoration opportunities, in order to enable the monitoring, protection and enhancement of our environment.

Based on a foundation of world-class science, we formed the company in response to the growing number of requests for satellite data analysis in the private and public sectors, and have grown rapidly since.

We provide high quality products and services, whether that is classification of satellite imagery, advising on data acquisition and processing, or implementing large scale forest monitoring programmes.

We have research and consultancy experience across the tropics, with projects in Africa, Asia and the Americas undertaken for multinational companies and major NGOs (see Clients).  We also undertake work closer to home, having conducted landscape analysis for the UK Government’s Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, and more recently in Scotland producing maps and analysis for the NatureScot (part of the Scottish Government) and the Scottish Wildlife Trust.

Space Intelligence team with Kate Forbes MSP
Scotland's Finance Secretary Kate Forbes MSP visited our offices in early 2020. She was then Scotland's Minister for Public Finance & Digital Economy, but has kept up with the company since being promoted - see our recent news.

The Space Intelligence Team

We are a diverse and dynamic team, based in Edinburgh in Scotland, UK. For obviously reasons we’re all working mostly remotely for now, but we’re still working collaboratively and successfully (see Covid-19 Update), and have continued to grow rapidly – in October 2020 we have 8 people (full and part time) working for us, compared to 4 at the start of 2020. 

4 people working at a table
The Space Intelligence team working in its offices, January 2020

Team

Dr Murray Collins, Chief Executive Officer

Murray has spent the past 15 years working on environmental technology projects: from camera-trapping in the jungles of Sumatra, measuring over four thousand trees in Gabon, to using satellites to track deforestation.

He holds an interdisciplinary PhD from the London School of Economics, and the Institute of Zoology, ZSL; an MSc with Distinction from Imperial College London;  and a BSc from University College London, with a term spent on ERASMUS at La Sorbonne, Paris V. He has certificates in Radar polarimetry from the European Space Agency (ESRIN); and Tropical Field Botany from the Royal Botanical Gardens Edinburgh.

Murray’s PhD research integrated causal inference techniques of Difference-In-Difference, regression and propensity-score matching; along with forest surveys and cutting-edge satellite radar sensing techniques to assess the performance of forest management projects.

He has published peer reviewed papers on mapping forest biomass, deforestation and forest degradation using satellite radar data; quantifying emissions from protected forests around the world; REDD policy; and has worked as a consultant providing such information for numerous clients globally.

He is also an expert in climate legislation particularly as relates to forests; co-authoring on the 3rd and 4th Global Climate Legislation Studies (GLOBE 2013/2015), reviewing hundreds of climate laws from 99 countries, and presenting the results to assembled governments at the World Bank in 2014.

He retains an interest in valuing the ecosystems which Space Intelligence maps: during his time at the LSE he worked on the economics team of the UK’s National Ecosystem Assessment.

In 2017 he won a highly competitive Royal Society of Edinburgh Enterprise Fellowship supported by the Natural Environment Research Council. This provided training and mentoring from Scottish business leaders, and set firm foundations for Space Intelligence Ltd.

Murray is also a Chancellor’s Fellow at the University of Edinburgh, leading the Space and Satellites innovation programme.

DSC_9874 (2)

Professor Ed Mitchard, Chief Technical Officer

Ed is a world expert in the field of satellite mapping of land cover change and forest properties. As such Ed is our Chief Science Advisor, bringing great scientific weight to the work of Space Intelligence. He is also a Professor in the School of GeoSciences at the University of Edinburgh.

He has published over 60 peer reviewed papers in this field, which have been referred to in the scientific literature over 6000 times.

He has won over £4 million (US$5.5 million) in research funding, from UK and US governments as well as the European Space Agency, the European Union and the World Bank.

In addition to expertise in developing and testing methods for using different types of satellite data to map forest change, he has also led field campaigns to collect ground data in countries including Brazil, Cameroon, Gabon, Kenya, Peru and Uganda.

He has advised governments including those of Gabon, Cameroon, Colombia and the UK on land use monitoring methods and forest inventory, and conducted training workshops on the use of remote sensing data across the world.

IMG-0864

Dr Keiko Nomura – Senior Analyst

Keiko has a unique expertise combining policy analysis and remote sensing /earth observation. Before coming to Edinburgh, she worked for UNDP and UNEP on REDD+ (Reducing Emissions from Deforestation and Forest Degradation in Developing Countries) in Southeast Asia, where she assessed the readiness of countries participating in REDD+ and provided technical assistance in developing national strategies and communication tools. She was also part of the team that created the REDD+ academy, a capacity development initiative by the UN-REDD Programme, and directly contributed to several modules in the curriculum.

Driven by the urgent need for better data in forest monitoring, Keiko left the UN and spent three years in PhD research and successfully developed methodologies to detect forest loss and identify drivers of deforestation with high accuracy and at low costs.

At Space Intelligence, she leads our Technology team, developing and enhancing our technology to map and monitor the world’s Natural Capital.

IMG_20200817_140005 (1)

Kristian Bodolai – Junior Software Developer

Kristian is a data scientist and developer with a genuine passion for Science and Nature. He holds a BSc Hons in Physics from University of Valencia where he specialised in General Relativity and in Nonlinear Dynamics.

After his formal studies he took a deep interest in Machine Learning and Artificial Intelligence, and he has been studying it since. Here at Space Intelligence he aims to expand his knowledge and apply what he learned from Physics and ML/AI to develop effective, nature based solutions to climate change. Kristian works on our code base, developing our deep analytics and satellite analysis platforms.

IMG_5239

Wietze Suijker – Geospatial Analyst

After his MSc in GIS, Wietze worked in a Water & IT company in Utrecht as the technical lead in a range of international satellite data-driven projects. These projects were developed to help small-holder farmers in Indonesia, Bangladesh and Vietnam. 

Wietze enjoys creating IT solutions that transform big data into information to support decision-making. At Space Intelligence, Wietze focuses on the development of technologies that exploit remote sensing data with Python to create scalable real-time information services.  

With a passion for geospatial technology, Wietze aims to continuously improve his data science skills, be a trustworthy colleague and deliver sustainable results.

Alexis Moyer photo

Dr Alexis Moyer – Geospatial Analyst

Alexis is the newest recruit to the Space Intelligence team, where she brings her wealth of experience in satellite data analysis to use and build our service offering to clients.

Alexis is a glaciologist by training, with expertise in combining remotely-sensed and field-based data to provide solutions to complex environmental research questions. She has an MSc from the University of British Columbia in Vancouver, Canada and a PhD from the University of Edinburgh, where she developed novel methodology to estimate submarine melt rates of tidewater glaciers and icebergs around the margin of the Greenland Ice Sheet.

As part of her MSc and PhD, degrees, Alexis has conducted field campaigns at Bridge Glacier in the Southern Coast Mountains of British Columbia as well as in south-west Greenland, collecting ground data and installing and maintaining a network of time-lapse cameras to capture glacier calving and retreat.

After completing her PhD, Alexis worked as a hydrologist for an environmental consultancy in Edinburgh, using hydrological and topographical data to predict flooding from future extreme weather events.

WhatsApp Image 2020-10-10 at 21.03.29

Michael Berliner – Project Manager & PR

Michael has a broad range of expertise, with a degree in Psychology, Philosophy and Physiology from the University of Oxford, and experience since producing films and adverts – including producing the award winning feature film Adult Life Skills, starring Jodie Whittaker. 

Michael has always had a fascination with science and space, and the environment, and has joined us during our period of rapid growth to use his project management and press/marketing experience to our advantage. 

Harry Carstairs

Harry Carstairs – PhD Intern

Harry took an interest in optics and image processing during his masters degree in Physics (University of Edinburgh). He is now studying for a PhD in the remote sensing of tropical forests, in which he will develop advanced radar processing techniques for the detection of forest degradation. This application of technical skills to provide solutions to environmental issues is also motivated him to undertake a 3 month internship at Space Intelligence.

marina_siccar_point

Marina Ruiz Sánchez-Oro

Marina is a PhD student researching ways to detect and predict landslides using remote sensing and machine learning, with a particular focus on deep learning practises.

With a masters degree in Physics from the University of Edinburgh, Marina enjoys all things programming  and maths related. She has kept an active interest in the environmental sciences throughout her degree, which has led her to do work on topics such as atmospheric physics and meteorology.

After a great experience in a short placement with Space Intelligence in early 2020, she is rejoining the team for an industrial CASE studentship.

Our technology protects forests extra ordinary biodiversity

Space Intelligence Ltd

Company number: SC595836

VAT number: GB342811714

Registered address:
113 St. John’s Road
Edinburgh
EH12 7SB

 

Company offices:
Space Intelligence Ltd
GeoVation suite
Meadowbank House
153 London Road,
Edinburgh
EH8 7AU