About terraPulse

TerraPulse is the leading developer of satellite-based measurements of the planet’s changing surface and is the only satellite analytics company to have built global maps for NASA. We’ve led the science of geospatial data development for two decades and are trusted by National Geographic, NASA, The World Bank, and governments around the world.

What makes us different

terraPulse is changing the way land is managed, bought, and sold by radically improving the labor-intensive information-gathering processes currently in-use and relied upon by land managers, brokerages, insurance providers, financial institutions and by government organizations.

Our suite of data products fills a critical gap in land use information by improving the transparency and efficiency of land purchases, insurance, and management. We map and monitor the history, status, and potential of property through satellite-based measurements of forests, farms, ranches, wildlands, and other land uses. Our algorithms apply decades of expertise in satellite image analysis to automate the provision of actionable, near real-time data.

As a result, our customers are able to discover new land purposes, inform business strategy faster, and make business decisions with confidence.

Company history

In 2014, at the University of Maryland Global Land Cover Facility, our team created the world's first high- resolution global maps of tree and water cover, as well as the world's first annual, 30-m resolution time-serial maps of impervious surface cover. Recognizing the equal responsibility of science, governance, and industry for sustaining our planet, terraPulse was founded later that year to provide custom geospatial data products and solutions to government, academic, and nonprofit researchers, as well as private land investors, owners, and managers.

Our clientele now spans the breadth of forest, agriculture, range, and wild land uses and our data and information systems serve analysts and managers in government, scientific, and commercial sectors.


Saurabh Channan

Saurabh Channan

Chief Executive Officer and Co-Founder

Saurabh Channan leads the design, development, and management of terraPulse’s computational and business systems. He is responsible for the company’s cloud and on-premise computational architecture, delivery of products and services, and execution of corporate function.

Saurabh holds a B.S. in Computer Science from the University of Maryland, Baltimore County and an M.S. in Information Systems from Johns Hopkins University. He managed the Global Land Cover Facility, the world’s first free online source of global satellite imagery, and he spearheaded the first high-performance computing platform for the university’s College of Behavioral and Social Sciences. At the Global Land Cover Facility, Saurabh was responsible for the production and delivery of satellite data products to NASA, the US Geological Survey, the European Space Agency, and others.

Saurabh has been a member of the NASA Earth Science Data and Information Systems Working Group, the Open Geospatial Consortium, and the International Union for the Conservation of Nature (IUCN); and he now advises the Earth on Amazon Web Services (AWS) Consortium on integrating satellite measurements for sustainable development.

Joe Sexton

Joseph Sexton, Ph.D.

Chief Scientist and Co-Founder

Dr. Sexton leads the development of terraPulse’s market strategy and guides the development of products and services to fit market needs. He is responsible for exploring and developing new market segments, discovering opportunities for technological application, and representing clients in the creation of technological solutions.

Joe holds a B.S. in Wildlife Ecology & Conservation from the University of Florida, an M.S. in Forest Resources from Utah State University, and a Ph.D. in Ecology from Duke University. Working at NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center and at the University of Maryland, Joe developed the machine-learning theory behind the world’s first global, Landsat-based maps of tree-canopy cover and the first satellite-based time series of urban impervious surface cover, as well as algorithms for monitoring forest growth and loss, plant productivity and stress, and wildlife habitat dynamics.

Loyal to his roots in natural resource management, Joe serves on the Advisory Board for the European Space Agency Climate Change Initiative’s Biomass project and on the User Working Group of the Oak Ridge National Laboratory’s ecological data archive. He also continues to work with academic scientists and land managers across the globe, contributing to the development of emerging methods and publishing theoretical and practical solutions in the top journals in the field, including Nature Climate Change, Science Advances, the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, and Remote Sensing of Environment.

Dr. Min Feng

Min Feng, Ph.D.

Chief Technology Officer and Co-Founder

Dr. Feng leads the development and production of terraPulse’s geospatial data products. He is responsible for the design and implementation of machine-learning algorithms, discovery and incorporation of new satellite data sources, and production of datasets meeting terraPulse’s rigorous standards of accuracy, precision, and consistency.

Min holds a B.S. in Physical Geography from Lanzhou University, China, an M.S.  in Cartography and Geographic Information Systems from Lanzhou University, and a Ph.D.  in Cartography and Geographic Information Science from the Chinese Academy of Sciences. He has worked at the Global Land Cover Facility at the University of Maryland, Chinese Academy of Sciences, and United Nations Environment Programme – Global Resource Information Database.

Dr. Feng developed the  the world's first global, Landsat-based maps of tree-canopy and inland surface-water. He has authored over 50 papers in top journals related to remote sensing, environmental sciences, and computer sciences. He is also the leading patentee of 2 patents and is certified as an Advanced Programmer by the Ministry of Information Industry of China.

Joe Sexton

John Lawrence

Managing Director, Marketing

John is responsible for executing terraPulse’s marketing strategy, developing sales functions, and managing client relationships.  

John brings to terraPulse 30 years of entrepreneurial and sales expertise. John began his career as a financial consultant with Merrill Lynch, then in 1991 he founded his own firm and developed customized investment solutions for the nation’s largest banks. He lead his firm and its product-development and marketing efforts for over 13 years, successfully co-developing and selling over $2B of innovative, high-performance financial solutions to his bank clients.   

John earned a Bachelor of Science in Business from the University of Maryland, he is a Registered Investment Advisor, and he holds FINRA Series 66 and 63 licenses. He has also qualified for and held FINRA Series 24 General Securities Principal, Series 31 Managed Futures and Series 7 General Securities Representative licenses.

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