Behind the Script
Automating Data Archiving
During my time as research assistant for Dr Kemp at Stellenbosch University, I was given the task to automate downloads of Sentinel-1 imagery for two orbits around Stellenbosch. The Sentinel satellite constellation is managed by the European Space Agency, providing the data collected by these satellites free of charge to the public. The specific satellite I had to create a script for is the Sentinel-1A mission. It captures SAR (Synthetic Aperture Radar) imagery at least every 12 days.
I have created a Python script to automate the download and archiving of the imagery. The script communicates with the Sentinel API and then checks if there are any new downloads since the script was previously executed. The script will download any new imagery or imagery which haven't finished downloading due to some error. Once the downloads are complete, a Google Sheet is automatically updated with the details of the latest downloads. Finally, an email is sent to myself and Dr Kemp to confirm the latest downloads. Should anything go wrong, the downloader will instead email output which can be used to debug the problem. The script runs bi-weekly on a set schedule.