23, July 2014

PROJECT TITLE: Clouds and Cloud Shadows Extraction Plug-In — CLOPI 

Coordinator: the Advanced Studies and Research Center (ASRC)


Period: November 2012 – November 2013

Project director: Florin Serban

Project team:

Description: The project aimed to develop an experimental model, CLOPI, for extracting both – and together – the clouds and the cloud shadows from optical satellite scenes. Beside the extraction feature, the CLOPI developed plug-in module is able to interact with time series of optical images, in order to produce multi-annual average cloud coverage maps, probability maps for cloud and shadows coverage and, most important, to perform automate segmentation and classification for time series of images that might be affected by clouds and cloud shadows presence. 

Project objectives:

  • Extract clouds and cloud shadows form optical images of various types, with a precision of over 95%;
  • Perform statistical analysis and export cloud&shadows maps for single images and for time series of optical images;
  • Obtain (near) real time operability of the designed plug-in module;
  • Compatibility of the final experimental model with at least two ESA image processing platforms: LeoWorks and BEAM.


  • User requirements assessment and preliminary design – included the elaboration of preliminary design of the CLOPI experimental model plug-in to be developed, in line with current clouds and cloud shadows extraction practices and user specific requirements.
  • Detailed design and model implementation – was dedicated to preliminary design and implementation of the first version of CLOPI experimental model plug-in.
  • Experimentation and quality evaluation – had as main objective to demonstrate the model and to evaluate the quality of the results.
  • Users’ feedback collection and model validation – dedicated to collecting users’ feedback and update the model components.
  • The project management activity was on-going throughout the entire project duration.

Contributions to the STAR programme objectives:

The project contributed to STAR programme’s goal to enhance the capabilities of Romanian space industry to participate in ESA programmes, by developing an experimental model, that is able to be implemented within ESA’s tools of image processing, in order to obtain better and more refined analysis from the satellite data.