Dr. Hannah Kerner, Dr. Inbal Becker-Reshef, Dr. Catherine Nakalembe, Dr. Ritvik Sahajpal, and Mike Humber have been awarded a Microsoft AI for Earth Azure grant to enhance computing capabilities for their Earth Observations for Field-Level Agricultural Resource Monitoring (EO-FARM) project which focuses on smallholder farms, mainly in African countries including Kenya and Mali. Microsoft’s AI for Earth grants provide support for projects that require high computing resources when exploring machine learning and artificial intelligence to create models that inform and influence the way we analyze Earth’s natural systems. Because of the massive volume of data that modern satellites are able to collect, the agricultural sector stands to benefit from increased capacity to apply machine learning analyses to big datasets.
Machine learning models are particularly valuable in regards to agricultural data analysis because they enable rapid analysis over large geographic areas at a fine spatial scale. The Microsoft AI for Earth grant provides the NASA Harvest team with access to Azure compute credits, technical support, Azure training materials, and networking and education opportunities. Microsoft recognizes the global value that agricultural research provides, noting that “by 2050, farmers must produce more food on less arable land and with less environmental impact to feed the world’s increasing population. AI can help people monitor the health of farms in real time.”
Visit the program website for more information on the Microsoft AI for Earth Azure grants, including details on how individuals and organizations can apply.