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SNAP 8.0 released

The SNAP development team is pleased to announce a new SNAP release.

The different installers for the supported platforms can be downloaded.

In this release the development teams worked on general features like remote access of data, data processing, IO performance and the memory management. Also, sensor specific improvements and features have been implemented.
Noteworthy is also that we will drop the support for Python 2.7 for snappy with the next release. With version 9 of SNAP, a Python 3 environment will be required.
Here we just highlight the main improvements. Check out the full list of issues (>200) solved for SNAP 8 in our issue database: https://bit.ly/SNAP8_changelog.

Performance improvements

In order to increase the performance of SNAP and improve the user experience some tasks have been performed.
The reading and writing performance of the BEAM-DIMAP format has been significantly improved. In some cases opening an image in SNAP took up to 5 minutes. Now, it only takes seconds. Similar magnitude of improvement has been achieved for the writing.
A first experimental step has also been made to lower the memory consumption. An experimental Tile Cache Operator has been implemented which gives more control of the memory usage. Please see the separate topic below for more details.

Reworked Product Library

The Product Library has been upgraded so that it can accommodate in a flexible way any type of sensor (radar, optical, atmospheric, etc.).
In addition, the display / interaction of / with product frames or quicklooks can be done on a 3D visualisation of Earth (NASA WorldWind).
The possibility to access (and search for) remote data was introduced by regarding remote data sources as independent SNAP plugins.
Besides, the parametrized search (with parameters in the form of values), it also handles the selection of the area of interest on the 3D visualisation of Earth.
New remote data repositories were added:

  • Copernicus Scientific Data Hub (SciHub): for Sentinel-1, Sentinel-2 and Sentinel-3 data
  • Amazon Web Services (AWS): for Sentinel-2 and Landsat-8 data
  • Alaska Satellite Facility (ASF): for Sentinel-1 and ALOS data
  • US Geological Survey (USGS): for Landsat-8 data

Windowed Reading of Products

Allows specifying a window (spatial subset) of either pixel coordinates or geographical coordinates, so that, instead of first opening a full product and then subsetting it to a region of interest, the reader will open directly the region of interest as a full-fledged product.

New NetCDF Library Version

We now use version 5.3 of the NetCDF library. If you use the NetCDF API directly exposed through SNAP you might be interested in the changes of the library.
You can check the documentation provided by unidata at https://docs.unidata.ucar.edu/netcdf-java/5.3/userguide/index.html.
A specific migration guide is provided (https://docs.unidata.ucar.edu/netcdf-java/5.3/userguide/upgrade_to_50.html).
We also removed the support for writing NetCDF3. They can still be read but not written anymore. If you still used the old format names ‘NetCDF-CF’ or ‘NetCDF-BEAM’ you should switch to NetCDF-CF or NetCDF-BEAM. You will benefit from smaller file sizes.

New Reimplemented GeoCoding

The pixel-based GeoCoding had some issues in the past. It was slow, and in some situations it just didn’t work and produced artifacts. These problems affect especially Sentinel-3 data. With SNAP 8 we now use a new implementation.
While it is now faster and more accurate you might notice slight differences to in geo-location to previous SNAP versions.

Experimental Tile Cache Operator

To further improve the memory management, especially during data processing, we introduced a special operator which can be used in processing graphs. This operator will cache only the data of its input. If this is used, and the general cache is disabled the amount of used memory can be reduced. The idea is that the cache memory is done automatically in the long-term, but to do so we need some experience on when data needs to be cached. Here we would need your feedback too.
More information can be found in the wiki.

Sensor specific improvements by Toolboxes

Capella and SAOCOM are now supported, and the support for RCM has been updated. There is a new Soil Moisture Toolkit for Radarsat-2/RCM.
Sentinel-3 SLSTR L1 oblique view is now correctly handled. The Sentinel-3 L2 FRP (Fire-Radiative-Products) are supported.

New Internal Default Data Format

With SNAP 8, we also want to introduce a new data format which will replace the BEAM-DIMAP. First we will just provide a BETA version as plugin shortly after the SNAP release. The version should not be used in a productive system or for operational services. But we would like to get your feedback on this new development, to further improve it.
More information will be provided with the release of the plugin.

Known Issues

SRTM 3 sec DEM

During testing we observed sometimes wrong values provided by the SRTM data. Instead of the expected elevation the DEM is rturning the elevation of an adjacent pixel. This is not always happening but depends on the download and on the operating system. It has been only observed on latest Unix systems. Deleting and redownloading the DEM file often helped to get the right values. For more information and updates on this issue please see https://senbox.atlassian.net/browse/SNAP-1344.

Enjoy the new release
The SNAP Team

SNAP 8.0 released

Notable Replies

  1. Thanks to the SNAP development team for the many improvements in this extraordinary year. I just upgraded a Windows 10 system, and saw a couple potential points of confusion:

    1. Defender Smartscreen flagged the .exe file as potentially dangerous.

    2. the installer’s list of supported Python versions stopped at 3.4, but seems to have succeeded with Python 3.6 (which I have been using with SNAP 7):

    INFO: Installing from Java module 'C:\Program Files\snap\snap\modules\org-esa-snap-snap-python.jar'
    INFO: Installing jpy...
    INFO: Extracting 'lib/jpy-0.9.0-cp36-cp36m-win_amd64.whl' from 'C:\Program Files\snap\snap\modules\org-esa-snap-snap-python.jar'
  2. Hi,

    the Defender Warning will go away after a certain number of users have downloaded the installer. I will also report it to Microsoft as safe a source. This might speed it up. For the next release we might get a certificate.
    On Mac users might see similar warning.

    Yes, snappy also works with 3.6 or even 3.7 but we haven’t tested these version enough to recommend these versions. But most likely it will work.

  3. Thank you for the new version, it looks really good. What is the procedure for the Sen2Cor plugin installation? The plugin doesn’t appear in the available plugins window.

    Thank you in advance, Jorge

  4. It will be available in the coming days. It takes some time to maintain all the plugins.
    Maybe it will be available already today.

  5. For me it is working. You need to use “Save As” otherwise the content of the install script is shown.

Continue the discussion forum.step.esa.int

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