Floods Slowly Recede around Bangkok
Tue Nov 29 2011
By late November 2011, floods were receding around Thailand’s capital city of Bangkok, but only slowly. These images from the Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) on NASA’s Terra satellite compare conditions around the city on November 28, 2011 (top), and November 1, 2011 (bottom).
These images use a combination of visible and infrared light to better distinguish...
Satellites respond to humanitarian needs
Tue Nov 22 2011
A review of crisis response using Earth observation techniques is now available online. The Respond Atlas outlines global events where remote sensing assisted in preparing for and responding to disasters and humanitarian crises.
The Respond project began in 2004 as a European Global Monitoring for environment and Security (GMES) initiative. During its five years of service, hundreds of maps were...
German satellite could help Chile predict natural disasters
Tue Nov 22 2011
A conference of geological and scientific experts met in the southern Chilean city of Punta Arenas last week to discuss using the TerraSAR-X satellite system to assist Chile in predicting volcanic eruptions. The satellite, which has been in orbit for nearly a year, could provide Chile with significantly advanced warning of volcanic activity and tsunamis.
The TerraSAR-X satellite has primarily...
NASA's TRMM Satellite Sees Deadly Tornadic Thunderstorms in Southeastern U.S.
Mon Nov 21 2011
Tornadoes are expected to accompany severe storms in the springtime in the U.S., but this time of year they also usually happen. When a line of severe thunderstorms associated with a cold front swept through the U.S. southeast on Nov. 16, TRMM collected rainfall data on the dangerous storms from space.
NASA's Tropical Rainfall Measuring Mission (TRMM) satellite flew over the southeastern United...
Concern over future of EU space programme
Mon Nov 21 2011
Eight member states have raised concerns about future funding for the EU's GMES space programme.
The countries used a letter to the commission to lodge a formal protest against what some believe could be possible funding reductions for the EU-wide scheme.
The move comes after the commission proposed funding for GMES 'outside' of the multiannual financial framework for the spending period from...
Landsat 5 Mission in Jeopardy
Mon Nov 21 2011
The U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) has stopped acquiring images from the 27-year-old Landsat 5 Earth observation satellite due to a rapidly degrading electronic component.
Landsat 5 was launched in 1984 and designed to last 3 years. The USGS assumed operation of Landsat 5 in 2001 and managed to bring the aging satellite back from the brink of total failure on several occasions following the...
Her Royal Highness Princess Euphelma Choden Wangchuck encourages secondary high school children of Thimphu to use modern geospatial tools
Thu Nov 17 2011
Her Royal Highness Princess Euphelma Choden Wangchuck inspired some secondary high school children from in and around Thimphu to learn about and understand climate change issues through interactive and fun-filled exercises using space technologies for practical day-to-day uses at a special youth event organised on 16 November 2011. Her Royal Highness has shown keen interest in this topic and was...
Mapping Data for European Disaster and Crisis Response
Thu Nov 17 2011
Emergency services working in the immediate aftermath of disasters will benefit from fast access to pan-European mapping created from interoperable, geospatial data thanks to an agreement between EuroGeographics and the European environment Agency (EEA).
The agreement, signed on 16th November 2011 at the Group on Earth Observation (GEO) plenary in Istanbul, Turkey, will improve access to data...
16th December 2011: Pléiades 1 in orbit, March 2012: first products available for you!
Tue Nov 15 2011
50-cm resolution ortho-rectified products for applications requiring a high level of detail
A phased orbit and a daily revisit, combined with extreme agility, for information in record time
The first component of a four-satellite constellation, for an ideal match of detail, coverage and revisit.
Following the recent success of the first Soyuz launch from the French Spaceport in Guiana, Astrium...
Ocean Temperatures Can Predict Amazon Fire Season Severity
Fri Nov 11 2011
GREENBELT, Md. -- By analyzing nearly a decade of satellite data, a team of scientists led by researchers from the University of California, Irvine and funded by NASA has created a model that can successfully predict the severity and geographic distribution of fires in the Amazon rain forest and the rest of South America months in advance.
Though previous research has shown that human settlement...
Using NASA Earth Observations to Evaluate the Relationship Between Land Use/Land Cover and Tornadogenesis in Alabama
Thu Nov 10 2011
The April 27, 2011, tornado outbreak was the second-deadliest in U.S. history, and the deadliest since the Doppler Radar system has been used to warn communities. Alabama has been involved in six of the 10 deadliest tornado outbreaks in U.S. history. Studies on tornadogenesis and tornado paths have found that the occurrence of tornadoes within Tornado Alley is not entirely random and that...
Lake Sakakawea and Lake Mead Water Resources and Disasters
Wed Nov 9 2011
Current regional and global scale hydrological models, such as the Coupled Routing and Excess STorage (CREST) model, do not take into account the release and storage of water by man-made dams. These models make gross assumptions about dam operation, impairing their accuracy and utility. In many less economically developed areas of the world, it is not possible to acquire information on the...
New European project launched to address shortcomings in climate data
Tue Nov 8 2011
A major European joint research project has kicked off to establish the infrastructure and expertise needed to make earth measurements which are sufficiently accurate to make reliable predictions about the effects of climate change. The project is a consortium of European National Measurement Institutes (NMIs) led by the UK’s National Physical Laboratory (NPL) and will devote some 28 man...
NASA Finally Launches New Climate Satellite, Highlighting Need For Funding New Monitoring Capabilities
Thu Nov 3 2011
In the predawn hours last Friday, the National Polar-Orbiting Operational Environmental satellite System Preparation Project satellite (let’s just call it NPP for short) was launched from Vandenberg Air Force Base in California, five years after its originally scheduled launch date. The SUV-sized satellite, a joint effort between NASA and NOAA, features five new instruments that will...
New NPP Satellite to Improve Land, Ocean, Ozone Observations
Thu Nov 3 2011
A new type of Earth-observing satellite has been launched into orbit. The National Polar-orbiting Operational Environmental Satellite System (NPOESS) Preparatory Project, or NPP, will fly at an altitude of 824 km in a polar orbit similar to that of its predecessors, the Earth Observing System satellites – Terra, Aqua and Aura. Built on the past decade’s work, NPP is a scientific...
Climate researchers warn of data crisis
Mon Oct 31 2011
Climate scientists warn that critical gaps in climate data could open up after the current generation of Earth-observation satellites comes to the end of its life, with the next generation nowhere near ready to take over.
The problem is exacerbated by the lack of an adequate replacement for a pair of Earth-observation satellites, the Orbiting Carbon Observatory and Glory, which failed on launch...
Looking Inside Hurricane Rina
Fri Oct 28 2011
After a two-week period without any named storms, the 2011 Atlantic hurricane season revived in late October with the arrival of Hurricane Rina. The storm, which began as a tropical depression on October 23 in the western Caribbean, is adding misery and destruction to a region that has been battered by heavy rain and flooding events.
The Tropical Rainfall Measuring Mission (TRMM) collected these...
China: Prepared for the Worst - Measures are taken to enhance disaster relief
Thu Oct 27 2011
According to a joint statement issued by the Ministry of Civil Affairs (MOCA) and the National Disaster Reduction Commission (NDRC) on October 10, natural disasters left 1,074 people dead or missing across China in the first nine months of this year.
Between January and September, natural disasters affected 480 million people nationwide, resulting in the evacuation or relocation of 9.12 million...
NASA caught Tropical Storm Rina forming, strengthening
Tue Oct 25 2011
NASA's Tropical Rainfall Measuring Mission satellite called "TRMM" and NASA's Aqua satellite captured radar and temperature data that showed tropical storm Rina forming in the western Caribbean Sea yesterday. Today, Rina continues strengthening.
The National Hurricane Center (NHC) upgraded an area of disturbed weather in the Caribbean to tropical depression eighteen and then to tropical...
Small But Agile Proba-1 Reaches 10 Years in Orbit
Tue Oct 25 2011
A good photographer needs agility. So it is with ESA microsatellite Proba-1, which turns in space to capture terrestrial targets. Celebrating its tenth birthday this week, Proba-1's unique images are used by hundreds of scientific teams worldwide.
A technology demonstrator turned into an Earth observation mission, the microsatellite - just a cubic metre in volume - has acquired nearly 20 000...