Quick Facts



The training workshop aims at developing the computer programming skills of those working on Earth Observation, including the members of the Earth Observation Laboratory (EO Lab) and other laboratories.

To stimulate collaboration beyond the training, the workshop is in person (full week). However, due to the high level of interest, remote participation is also possible.

The topics covered include acquisition, processing, visualisation, and classification of Earth Observation data, using the Julia programming language.

The training workshop will emphasize practical activities including the use of datasets, libraries/packages, automated workflows, Artificial Intelligence (AI), and classification algorithms. Theory-oriented sessions will introduce the concepts and hands-on activities.


The open-source Julia language is relatively recent. It was created at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), first released in 2012, and reached the v1.0 milestone in 2018. Julia has a vocation for high-performance scientific computing, making it today’s ideal choice to work on resource-intensive datasets such as the Earth Observation ones.

Mutual benefits expected to arise from the collaboration of the AIR Centre and the Julia community include:


The workshop will encompass different levels of expertise, from beginner to advanced, with a focus on Earth Observation concepts and programming skills. Our idea is to provide a single track of sessions in the morning and more detailed parallel sessions in the afternoon and to split people evenly on the double track part. There are three types of activities:

Day 1 - Monday 09.01.2023

Timezone: UTC -1; GMT-1

9:00 – 9:45 Welcome speech and program presentation J. Pinelo

10:00 – 10:20 Coffee break

10:20 – 12:15 Hands-on session 1 Julia for beginners L. Alonso & S. Danisch

12:15 – 13:15 Lunch break

13:15 – 14:00 Plenary session 2 Raster data: Reading, Manipulating, and Visualising R. Schouten

14:00 – 15:55 Hands-on session 2.1 Advanced Geodata Science & Geostatistical Learning J. Hoffimann

14:00 – 15:55 Hands-on session 2.2 Land Cover Classification of Earth Observation images R. Schouten

15:55 – 16:15 Coffee break

16:15 – 17:15 General hackathon: Performing Land Cover/Land Use Classification

Day 2 - Tuesday 10.01.2023

Timezone: UTC -1; GMT-1

9:00 – 9:45 Plenary session 1 SAR data manipulation F. Cremer

9:45 – 10:05 Coffee break

10:05 – 12:00 Hands-on session 1 Data Visualizations with Makie.jl

 10:05 - 11:00: 1.1- Plots, Animations, & Graphics S. Danisch
 11:05 - 12:00: 1.2- Visualization of Earth Observations Data L. Alonso

12:00 – 13:00 Lunch break

13:00 – 13:45 Parallel session 2.1 The Power of JuliaGeo M. Visser

13:00 – 13:45 Parallel session 2.2 SARProcessing.jl – Background and Method S. Lupemba & E. Lippert

13:45 – 15:40 Hands-on session 2.1 Working with SAR and InSAR Data K. Sørensen, S. Lupemba

15:40 – 16:00 Coffee break

16:00 – 17:00 General hackathon: Natural hazards monitoring (Building new features for SARProcessing.jl if possible)

19:30 Opening dinner (Castelhino Restaurant) Location

Day 3 – Wednesday 11.01.2023

Timezone: UTC -1; GMT-1

9:00 – 9:45 Plenary session 1 MBON, Ocean Biomes Monitoring, and Marine Ecosystem Modeling F. Muller-Karger, A. Lima and G. Forget

09:45 – 10:05 Coffee break

10:05 – 12:00 Hands-on session 1 : Regional Ocean Data G. Forget and A. Valente E. Castanho

 10:05 - 10:45: 1.1- Gathering Gridded Data over Ocean Provinces 
 10:45 - 11:30: 1.2- Sea Level and Drifting Buoys near Azores 
 11:30 - 12:00: 1.3- AIR Centre work with the Marine Debris Archive (MARIDA) 

12:00 – 13:00 Lunch break

13:00 – 14:00 General hackathon: Characterization of Marine Ecosystems from Space Using Artificial Intelligence

Day 4 – Thursday 12.01.2023

Timezone: UTC -1; GMT-1

9:00 – 9:45 Plenary session 1 Data science, big data, and cloud native solutions F. Gans (remote), M. Klöwer (remote)

9:45 – 10:05 Coffee break

10:05 – 12:00 Hands-on session 1.1 Simulating oceanic pathways of plastics, pollutants, or marine ecosystems G. Forget

10:05 – 12:00 Hands-on session 1.2 Julia Use Case for Change Detection F. Cremer

12:00 – 13:00 Lunch break

13:00 – 13:45 Parallel session 2.1 Julia showcases in Oceanography A. Barth, G. Forget

13:00 – 13:45 Parallel session 2.2 Machine learning with geospatial data, what can go wrong? J. Hoffimann

13:45 – 15:40 Hands-on session 2.1 Julia showcases in Oceanography A. Barth, G. Forget

13:45 – 15:40 Hands-on session 2.2 Processing LiDAR elevation point clouds: using vector data in Julia M. Pronk

15:40 – 16:00 Coffee break

16:00 – 17:00 General hackathon: AIR Centre Use Cases

Day 5 – Friday 13.01.2023

Timezone: UTC -1; GMT-1

9:00 – 9:45 Plenary session 1 SARProcessing.jl – vision, state of affairs, and roadmap E. Lippert, S. Lupemba, K. Sørensen, I. Szczesniak

9:45 – 10:05 Coffee break

10:05 – 12:00 Hands-on session 1.1 Datacubes for high-resolution EO data F. Cremer

10:05 – 12:00 Hands-on session 1.2 Retrieving satellite and reanalysis data from EO servers N. Wong, A. Barth

12:00 – 12:30 Workshop closure/farewell speech

12:30 – 13:30 Farewell lunch

13:30 – 14:00 Hacked a ton: week's spontaneous outcomes


The following speakers have been selected from the Julia community to participate in this training event. The speakers involve a mix of seasoned and young/aspiring scientists. The selection was based on the level of skill and commitment demonstrated, with contributions to the EO software packages which are most needed for AIR Centre’s current work and future development.

Additionally, there are a small group of scientists from the AIR Centre or related to its activities.

Adriano Lima


Adriano Lima is Senior Project Officer and MBON Scientific Programmer at the Air Centre. He holds a Ph.D. in Civil Engineering with emphasis on environmental hydraulics from Hokkaido University, Japan. He has experience working as assistant professor, principal researcher and team manager, with focus on computational fluid dynamics, data science, aquaculture and multiple sectors of the blue economy.

Alexander Barth

Alexander Barth

Alexander Barth is a researcher working at the University of Liege (Belgium) in the GHER group (GeoHydrodynamics and Environment Research). He did a PhD on nested numerical ocean models and data assimilation. Currently he is working on variational analysis schemes for climatologies and neural networks to reconstruct missing data.

André Valente

André Valente

Andre Valente is a physical oceanographer interested in satellite remote sensing applications. He specializes in the integration of satellite, model and in-situ data, for applications such as the study of ocean climate variability and physical-biological interactions . He holds a PhD in Environmental Sciences from the University of Azores and a Degree in Geophysical Sciences from the University of Lisbon. He is currently woking at the Earth Observation Lab of the AIR Centre and previously worked at the University of Lisbon, where he was team member of several projects, such as the recent ESA Ocean-Colour Climate Change Initiative.

Eigil Yuichi Hyldgaard Lippert

Eigil Lippert

I am currently pursuing a Ph.d. in Numerical Glaciology in which I am working with a reconstruction of the Greenland ice sheet and its glaciers, going back to the last little ice age. This work is mostly centered around finite element modeling of glaciers and trying to understand their main drivers and dynamics.

Before this, I did a master’s degree in engineering, focused on earth observation data, large-scale physics, and machine learning. I was involved in satellite observation and analysis and developed a method for synthesizing landslides in the InSAR coherence domain and building an algorithm that could detect these signatures in real-world SAR Coherence data. I also developed an InSAR coherence processor in Julia which could process SLC data and create interferograms and coherence estimates. I am currently in the process of porting this work into an open-source library, together with 3 other people.

Emanuel Castanho

Emanuel Castanho

He holds a master’s degree in Aeronautical Engineering from the University of Beira Interior (Covilhã). Currently, he works at the EO Lab as a Project Developer in projects such as AEROS, ECOBLUE, LABPLAS, PORTXXI and K2D. His main focus is to use programming as a main tool to handle remote sensing data, in particular optical satellite data, in order to fight real problems (plastic pollution and climate change).

Fabian Gans

Felix Cremer

Felix Cremer

Felix Cremer received his diploma in mathematics from the University of Leipzig in 2014. In 2016 he started his PhD study on time series analysis of hypertemporal Sentinel-1 radar data.
He is interested in the use of irregular time series tools on Synthetic Aperture Radar data to derive more robust information from these data sets.
He worked on the development of deforestation mapping algorithms and on flood mapping in the amazon using Sentinel-1 data.
He currently works at the Max-Planck-Institute for Biogeochemistry on the development of the JuliaDataCubes ecosystem in the scope of the NFDI4Earth project. The JuliaDataCubes organisation provides easy to use interfaces for the use of multi dimensional raster data.

Frank Muller-Karger

Frank Muller-Karger

Frank Muller-Karger is a biological oceanographer (Professor) at the College of Marine Science, University of South Florida. Muller-Karger conducts research on how marine ecosystems change in time. He uses time series of observations collected by traditional oceanographic methods and by satellite sensors to study changes in water quality, primary production, and biodiversity in coastal and marine environments. This research helps in understanding how large-scale phenomena, like climate change or other disturbances, affect ecosystems including people.
The focus of his present work is to assess the importance of continental margins, including areas of upwelling, river discharge, and coral reefs in the global carbon budget. Muller-Karger combines the observations from different satellites to measure ocean color, sea surface temperature, winds, salinity and sea surface elevation and how these change. He uses field-based time series to measure the vertical structure of plankton and how particles settle in the ocean. Much of this work focuses on improving methods to measure the diversity of phytoplankton using remote sensing.
Muller-Karger has worked hand-in-hand with K-12 teachers and students and the public to showcase these new technologies and to highlight the importance of the ocean in our daily lives. He has a keen interest in linking science and education, and in addressing the problem of under-representation of minorities in scientific research programs. Muller-Karger was appointed by President George W. Bush to serve on the U.S. Commission on Ocean Policy in 2001. In 2005, he was appointed to the Ocean Studies Board of the National Research Council/National Academies. He previously received the NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory Award for Outstanding Contributions and the NASA Administrator Award for Exceptional Contribution and Service for supporting development of satellite technologies for ocean observation. From August 2007-August 2009 he served as Dean of the School for Marine Science and Technology (SMAST) at the University of Massachusetts Dartmouth. He has B.S., M.S. and Ph.D. degrees in marine science and a Masters degree in management, and has authored or co-authored over 120 scientific publications.

Gaël Forget

Gael Forget

Currently works as a research scientist at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) in the Department of Earth, Atmospheric and Planetary Sciences. Research interests and expertise include satellite observations, ocean robots, marine ecosystems, ocean physics, numerical modeling, and estimation in general (incl. AI, ML, DA, & AD). Created the JuliaOcean and JuliaClimate organizations. Lead developer of a series of Julia packages focused on ocean and climate science. These include MeshArrays.jl (JuliaCon18), ClimateModels.jl (JuliaCon21), and OceanRobots (JuliaCon21).

Iga Szczesniak

Iga Szczesniak

Iga is a Project Developer at the Earth Observation Laboratory of the AIR Centre. She holds a master’s degree in Geoinformatics, Photogrammetry, and Remote Sensing obtained at the University of Science and Technology in Cracow. During her academic career, she conducted research at Aalto University, Finland focusing on the cryosphere, glacier monitoring, and SAR technology. Prior to joining AIR Centre, she analyzed the EO market and innovative usages of Copernicus Sentinels data while interning at European Space Agency.

Júlio Hoffimann

Júlio Hoffimann

Dr. Júlio has more than 10 years of experience in advanced statistical theories for geosciences. He is creator and lead developer of the GeoStats.jl project, as well as various other open source projects that are widely used by geoscientists around the world.

Kristian Sørensen

Kristian Sørensen

Kristian Sørensen received the bachelor and master degree in Earth and Space Physics and Engineering from the Technical University of Denmark (DTU), Kgs. Lyngby, Denmark, in 2018 and 2021 respectively and has a specialization in Earth Observation. He is currently working toward a Ph.D. degree at the Technical University of Denmark (DTU), Denmark. In his work, he is trying to increase maritime domain awareness and surveillance using satellite data and artificial intelligence. His research interests include ship trajectory prediction using deep learning, and satellite data fusion with, e.g., Synthetic Aperture Radar (SAR) images and AIS data.

Lazaro Alonso

Lazaro Alonso

Lazaro Alonso is a Mexican physicist currently working at the Max Planck Institute for Biogeochemistry in the Model Data Integration Group. Interested in Hybrid Model-Based approaches to climate sciences as well as scientific visualization. Other interests of his are complex networks, graph neural networks and time series analysis.

He is a coauthor of the Julia Data Science book and main contributor to the gallery https://beautiful.makie.org/ and contributes as much as possible to open source in his spare time if any.

Maarten Pronk

Maarten Pronk

Maarten Pronk is a researcher at Deltares and an external PhD candidate at the Delft University of Technology. He holds a MSc in Geomatics and a BSc in Architecture, both from the Delft University of Technology (NL). His research concerns elevation modelling, especially in lowlands prone to coastal flooding. He aims to combine his interests in remote sensing and software engineering for societal impact. He promotes open and reproducible research and is the author of several open-source software packages for handling geospatial data, written in the Julia programming language. His work often involves handling trillions of elevation measurements, requiring a careful selection and design of both spatial storage formats and processing algorithms. Currently he works on applying data from ICESat-2, a LiDAR satellite, on global elevation models.

Martijn Visser

Martijn Visser is a hydrologist at Deltares, where he focuses on integrated water resources management, as well as building open source software to support it. As an early adopter of the Julia programming language he’s been active in the open source community, helping to set up and maintain JuliaGeo and its packages, which aim to make it easier to work with geospatial data in Julia.

Milan Klöwer

Milan Klöwer is a climate scientist at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT). He did his PhD at the University of Oxford, working on climate model development, low precision computing, data compression and information theory, predictability of weather and climate, and software engineering. During that time, he proposed the bitwise real information content as a way to distinguish between valuable information and noise in climate data, with the reference implementation BitInformation.jl. He currently develops SpeedyWeather.jl, a global atmospheric model designed to be a computational research playground to develop prototype ideas on computationally efficient climate models.

Nathanael Wong

Nathanael Wong

Nathanael is a 4th Year PhD Candidate at Harvard University studying Tropical Climate Dynamics using a range of tools, from satellite observations and reanalysis datasets, to climate models that range from idealized small-domains, to global models. For the past three years, he has used Julia to aid in the retrieval and analysis of various climate observational datasets, and in the future aims to use Julia to help speed up the analysis of climate model output. Currently, he works under Professor Kuang to understand the differences in precipitation and moisture dynamics over tropical islands from both oceanic and continental regions.

Rafael Schouten

Rafael Schouten

Rafael Schouten is an Australian macroecologist with a background in niche and dispersal modelling of terrestrial plant and animal distributions in the context of climate, invasive species and deforestation. Currently he is doing a PhD in drivers of island extinctions at the Center for Macroecology, Evoloution and Climate in Copenhagen.

Rafael authors Rasters.jl and packages on spatial process modelling such as DynamicGrids.jl along with a number of supporting tools like DimensionalData.jl and ModelParameters.jl. He also works on or co-maintains a number of the JuliaGeo packages and related tools.

Simon Danisch

Simon is the author of Makie and currently works full time on Makie as a freelancer. He has been part of the Julia community for more than 10 years and is the author of many Julia packages. To just name a few that are still actively used by many people in the Julia community: Makie, GeometryBasics, GPUArrays, PackageCompiler, JSServe and FileIO.

His mission has always been, to create a sustainable plotting and graphics ecosystem for Julia, which enables visualizations in need of high performance as well as making it very easy to quickly create simple plots and integrate them into dashboards.

Nowadays, with Climate change threatening to destroy the fundament of our modern life, he is focusing his efforts on making sure that Makie works well for climate science to better understand the changes that are coming for us.

Simon Kok Lupemba

Simon Kok Lupemba

Junior Remote Sensing Scientist at EUMETSAT working in the scatterometry team. I support the quality monitoring, calibration and validation of operational scatterometer products and also prototype and maintain processing software for the extraction of products.

I am a MSc graduate in Earth and Space Physics and Engineering from DTU and I have hands-on experience working with SAR data from my studies. Most of my academic projects focused on processing SAR images e.g. speckle filtering, interferometric coherence and automated flood mapping. I have implemented InSAR coherence processing in Julia (programming language) without using commercial software or SAR related libraries.

I have also worked as an IT-consultant at Netcompany for 2 years where I was involved with support, maintenance and development of medium-sized public IT projects. My regular tasks included; defining and estimating tasks, developing new features, fixing existing bugs and providing general support.



  1. Is there a fee to attend the workshop? No.
  2. Do I need to register to attend the workshop?
    Yes. If you (your institution) received an invitation, please write to and request access to the form to register.
  3. Does the AIR Centre provide transfers between the airport and the hotel? Yes, but only for the speakers on Terceira Island.
  4. How to access the Slack channel? Go to the julialang.slack.com Workspace and type juliaeo2023 in the Slack search bar.


The workshop will take place at Hotel do Caracol in Angra do Heroísmo, Terceira Island. The hotel is located close to the Historic Centre of the Town of Angra do Heroísmo ​​inscribed on the UNESCO World Heritage List.

Invited speakers will also be hosted at the hotel.

In-person participants who wish to stay at the hotel shall mention the event to get special pricing.

Organizing Committee



An Event ESA_Lab@Azores