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Detail of drip line

Common uses

  • Pinpointing common issues in both drip and pivot irrigation systems—including leaks, clogged emitters, and pressure issues
  • Optimizing irrigation system design and scheduling for terrain and soil conditions
  • Improving distribution uniformity
  • Selecting the best locations for moisture probes and other point-source sensors
Aerial view of center pivot fields

How it works

Ceres Imaging can assess the relationship between plant transpiration and the crop canopy's surface temperature. Our analysis of the data is powered by machine learning, allowing us to rapidly identify individual plants or areas of the crop canopy that exhibit a stress response. Full-canopy measurements of water stress are categorized by severity using established benchmarks specific to crop type and maturity.

The Water Stress Index presents this analysis as a simple and intuitive classification, translating the complexity of multispectral imagery into an easy-to-understand representation of stressed and non-stressed areas of a field. In 20% of the fields we fly, we detect an irrigation issue affecting more than five acres.

From imagery to action

High-resolution multispectral imagery is only the beginning. Our analytics tools help you interpret your data—translating what you can see in your imagery into what you can do about it.

Clogged nozzles in water stress imagery


The red rings show where a clogged nozzle has resulted in underwatering.

Pressure issues in water stress imagery

Pressure issues

An irrigation pressure issue presents as a gradual increase in crop stress toward the edge of the field.

Damaged equipment in water stress imagery

Damaged drip line

The stressed area in this field was found to have drip line damaged by rodents.

System design issue in water stress imagery

System design

The irrigation system in this field needs improvements to match the terrain: the imagery shows underwatering on the uphill end of the field.

Ensuring accuracy

Ceres Imaging’s emphasis on quality begins even before we fly your fields.

Image capture

We capture imagery during peak daylight hours and under weather conditions that minimize distortion from shadows and cloud cover. Our highly sensitive, custom-built cameras detect minute changes in the multispectral range—allowing us to detect crop stress earlier than our competitors.

Processing and analysis

Imagery is geo-referenced and meticulously “masked” to ensure that only relevant information is evaluated. By making use of crop-specific data models and isolating the canopy from ground cover and other background noise, we prevent skewing of the data and enable a more accurate assessment of plant health.

Quality control

Imagery is assessed in-house by Ceres Imaging’s remote sensing experts, passing through multiple checkpoints before delivery in the Ceres Imaging app within 48 hours of the flight. Growers can access their data on a mobile device, tablet, or desktop computer.


Get started with Ceres

Schedule a consultation for detailed product info, pricing, and more.

Contact us

The difference between Ceres Imaging and other technologies I've used is the help I get from their expert team. 
Jake Samuel, Partner
Samuel Farms
With Ceres Imaging we can take a more targeted approach to applying fertilizer and nutrients.
Brian Fiscalini, Owner
Fiscalini Cheese Company
These flights can cover way more ground and provide more insight than a dozen soil moisture probes — and it's cheaper to implement.
Patrick Pinkard, Assistant Manager
Terranova Ranch
The average Ceres Imaging conductance measurement from its imagery over the season has provided the best correlation with applied water.
Blake Sanden
University of California Cooperative Extension