Earth Observation Business

Imaging Earth from space has become normal business and the acquired data a commodity like any other. Earth-observation satellites are constructed and launched at conveyor-belt speed. On 27th October 2005 a Kosmos-3M booster blasted off from Russia’s Plesetsk Cosmodrome carrying, among others, no fewer than two earth-observation satellites: UK’s TopSat (resolution 2.5m) and China’s Bejing-1, carrying black-and-white and colour cameras with resolutions of 4m and 30m, respectively. Japan’s Advanced Land Observing Satellite (ALOS) was rocketed beyond Earth’s atmosphere on 24th January 2006, and the Korean KOMPSAT-2 on 28th July 2006. The Indian Remote Sensing Satellite IRS Cartosat-2 was successfully launched... (read more)
2007-06-14 12:00:00

Earth Observation Data

Without information we live blindly. Without information there is no planning, no understanding, no action taking, no communication…. Information is what makes the world go round. Although Earth Observation (EO) satellites are being launched at breakneck speed, there are impediments to the use of all the peta bytes (mega x giga) of data generated by these sensors. Yet EO data waiting eagerly to be used for the benefit of the planet and all that populates it too often languishes covered by a thick layer of dust in some obscure archive. EO data neglect does not occur from any lack of... (read more)
2008-01-11 12:00:00

Earth Observation: Gaps and Trends

India regularly witnesses devastating natural disasters that cause great human suffering and economic loss. The east and west coasts are affected by severe cyclones. In the Himalayan area, more than 650 earthquakes of a magnitude exceeding 5 have taken place over the past hundred years. The Himalayas, particularly the hilly tracts, are also vulnerable to landslides. The Rivers Ganges and Brahmaputra regularly flood the plains of north-east India, through which 60% of the country’s river water flows. Not only is the sudden presence of abundant water a threat, but lack of water too; 68% of sown area is prone to... (read more)
2008-11-11 12:00:00

ESA Earth Observation Summer School

The sixth ESA Earth Observation Summer School has come to a close. The two-week course saw 70 students from more than 20 countries worldwide convene at ESRIN, ESA’s centre for Earth observation in Frascati, Italy. The students, mostly PhD students and young postdoctoral scientists, attended daily lectures covering issues related to remote sensing, Earth system modelling and data assimilation. Jean-Noël Thépaut, Head of Data Division at the European Centre for Medium-Range Weather Forecasts, gave a lecture on the use of satellite data for numerical weather prediction. Irene Garonna, who is starting her PhD in Earth observation at the University of... (read more)
2012-08-13 10:15:05

Earth Observation in Conflict Mitigation

Co-ordinated Mission
The conflicts in Darfur and Chad have led to excessive human-rights violations, including murder, rape and enforced displacement. Millions of civilians have had to leave their homes and hundreds of thousands have died as a result of attacks. The worst years of fighting were 2003 and 2004, but violence is on the increase again. International peacekeeping has not proved effective and access to humanitarian agencies is limited. A powerful tool in support of planning processes for international missions is earth observation (EO) via up-to-date satellite imagery.<P> In early summer 2008, the external relations directorate-general of the European Commission (DG RELEX)... (read more)
2009-06-30 12:00:00

Earth Observation From Space Contest

From February 1 to September 30, 2010 the second contest of tutorials on the application of Earth observation images for school children training called "Round about" is to take place. The contest organisers,NGO Transparent World and the ScanEx RDC, invite teachers to participate. This contest is aimed to broaden the pedagogical experience and to make ideas of using space images popular among the educational community. All contest participants will be awarded with commemorative diplomas. Winners and runners-up in each nomination will get a set of materials on using space images in education, as well as certificates that can be used... (read more)
2010-02-16 08:56:46

Twenty Years in Earth Observation

GAF AG
GAF AG started out in October 1985 as privately owned company that offered services in satellite remote sensing and image processing. Over time, this core competence has developed and expanded into spatial technology, geo-information, and related consulting services. With its headquarters in Munich, GAF AG began as the Gesellschaft für Angewandte Fernerkundung mbH (GAF). Founding fathers were Dr Rupert Haydn, together with Agrar- und Hydrotechnik GmbH (AHT), Essen, and the JBK Management Company of the Wittelbacher Compensation Fund in Munich. The company started with a team of five, and currently employs over eighty experts in the fields of geo-information and... (read more)
2005-11-28 12:00:00

Funding for European Earth Observation until 2020

The European Council has secured Global Monitoring for Environment and Security (GMES) programme funding through 2020. The multi-annual financial framework – MFF – is a seven-year plan for the EU’s budget. On 8 February, European heads of state and government agreed to include GMES in the 2014-2020 MFF for GMES Services, In-Situ Component (a network of sensors on the ground, at sea and in the air) and the Space Component, thus securing funding for the programme’s long-term operational phase. Within the new framework, EUR3,786 million was allocated for GMES. The funds will allow GMES operations to continue to provide ever-improving... (read more)
2013-02-21 10:54:43

Earth Observation Data for Everyday Applications

Using satellites to improve the exploitation of water resources is just one of the innovative ideas developed over the week-long 'camp' dedicated to creating mobile apps drawing on Earth observation data. Twenty developers from 11 countries convened at ESA’s ESRIN centre in Frascati, Italy, in early September 2014 for the third annual 'App Camp'. The goal was to bring Earth observation data – particularly coming from the European Copernicus environment-monitoring programme – to everyday users through smartphones. Each of the five teams had a week to create an app under the following categories: emergency and rescue management, marine environment and... (read more)
2014-09-16 09:06:48
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