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Applications of remote sensing

Remote sensing has enabled mapping, studying, monitoring and management of various resources like agriculture, forestry, geology, water, ocean etc. It has further enabled monitoring of environment and thereby helping in conservation. In the last four decades it has grown as a major tool for collecting information on almost every aspect on the earth. With the availability of very high spatial resolution satellites in the recent years, the applications have multiplied. In India remote sensing has been used for various applications during the last four decades and has contributed significantly towards development. Remote Sensing from space has come a long way since early days of space science. In August, 1959 Explorer 6 took first pictures of earth. After that, the first weather satellite Tiros 1 was launched by the USA in April, 1960. With continuous evolution of remote sensing as a science numerous scientific sensors have been placed in orbit for studying various earth phenomena. Sensors placed in space are helping us better analyze, plan and manage the human environment. Remote Sensing data available at SATPALDA can be of immense help if your work area crosses any of following sectors:

Agriculture Forestry Geological and Soil mapping Cartography Environmental Studies Disaster and Risk management Defense and Security Telecommunications Utilities

Agriculture Agriculture is one of the many areas where our Remote Sensing data can help you in maximizing your output as well as increase your understanding about the processes affecting the crop growth. Typical applications include crop inventory, yield prediction, soil/crop condition monitoring and subsidy control. The scale of products varies, but typical applications are based on the recognition of individual agricultural parcels. New techniques such as precision farming can benefit from the contributions of our data, including the coming generation of high-resolution data, in synthesis with other information sources.

Soil condition analysis Inventory and statistics Yield estimates Crop damage estimate Crop management

Forestry Often the forest-cover data available from govt. agencies is too old to be reliable. And also it may not be in the desired format. Remote sensing data can help you generate your own up-to-date maps on desired scale. Usual desired scale for forest related maps are 1:100.000 - 1:250.000 for national and regional applications, mainly compliant with medium resolution satellites. Higher scales are required for local cutting management plans. Main applications that can help government and other big commercial agencies in managing their forestry assets can be summarized in following points.

Inventory & updating Mapping Change detection Forest Health Analyses Forest road maps

Geology Agriculture is one of the many areas where our Remote Sensing data can help you in maximizing your output as well as increase your understanding about the processes affecting the crop growth. Typical applications include crop inventory, yield prediction, soil/crop condition monitoring and subsidy control. The scale of products varies, but typical applications are based on the recognition of individual agricultural parcels. New techniques such as precision farming can benefit from the contributions of our data, including the coming generation of high-resolution data, in synthesis with other information sources.

Seismic Survey Design Structural Mapping Terrain Visualization Through DTM Asset Identification Environmental Monitoring Pipeline Routing Change Detection Logistical Feasibility Assessment

Cartography Geological exploration activities (such as oil, mineral and gas exploration) make up an application segment that takes full advantage of satellite capabilities. At macro scale mapping todays remote sensing platforms allow generation of Rock Unit Maps and Tectonic Structure Maps; interferometry allows the generation of DEMs and the monitoring of mining subsidence, while radar data are a powerful tool for off-shore oil seep detection and monitoring. Good synergistic use of available local information such as maps, well location information can be of immense help to industry users. SATPALDAs remote sensing data can help you in:

Cadastral maps Road and infrastructure maps DEMs

Environmental Studies Satellite remote sensing data provides powerful solutions for environmental monitoring. Environmental studies generally require land cover/use, water management and impact assessment products. The scale requirements are consistent with medium resolution satellites, with typical values are in the range 1:25.000 1:250.000. Such types of products are generally required by government organizations or big international agencies. The use of satellite resources is accepted and operational, but there is still room for expansion of this market into new applications, particularly those coming from the new polluter pays principle, which gives private companies a cost incentive for environmental monitoring.

Land Use / Land Cover maps Hydrological / Watershed map Wildlife Habitat Maps Soil Contamination Map

Quarries and Waste Identification Desertification analysis

Disaster and Risk management Earth observation data has potential to play a key role in Risk management. The primary prerequisite of data required for risk management and disaster effects mitigation is rapid data availability. The main hindrances in this are the frequency of revisit of the remote sensing platform and ambient weather conditions. For example in flooding caused by heavy rainfall there is generally a persistent cloud cover over the area, which prevents any data acquisition by optical systems. SAR (synthetic aperture radar) sensors by virtue of their capability to penetrate cloud cover prove extremely useful in such conditions. Earth observation data can be used in every stage : pre-crisis, during crisis and post crisis. Products needed in the first situation are mainly related to the collection of land cover, geological and hydrological information, while near-real time mapping and tracking of events is required in crisis and post crisis situations. In the three possible risk management situations, crisis prevention is currently seen as the main opportunity, much more than crisis monitoring and damage assessment. This is mainly due to the fact that the coverage needs of crisis monitoring and damage assessment are less than those required for prevention or for monitoring of an on-going crisis. In addition, the number of crises occurring around the world in one year remains rather small. The importance of post-crisis analysis could be improved if the insurance sector should start operational use of satellite data for the assessment of damage due to natural disasters.

Flood Extent Landslide & Ground Movement Maps Fire Damage Maps Oil Spill Maps Storm Damage Maps Building risk maps (interferometric subsidence)

Defense and Security The defense sector has always been the pioneer user for new technologies. Earth observation from space is no exception. Militaries around the world have been using satellite imagery for intelligence gathering and other threat assessment analyses. The main applications are the generation of maps, target monitoring and detection, and digital elevation model generation. Data fusion techniques that combine data from different sources are also used. The scale of data is variable, and goes from 1:200.000 down to very detailed scales. New technologies such as SAR have expanded the data acquisition window, as these sensors being active sensors, can acquire data at any moment be it day or night, clear or cloudy. One such sensor is the new TerraSAR-X sensor. Apart from above mentioned capabilities it has a resolution of 1m and capacity to acquired data in various polarization combinations.

DEMs Cartographic maps Slope Maps Visibility Maps Land Cover Maps Road and infrastructure maps Data fusion

Telecommunications Telecommunications designers increasingly are turning to multispectral and panchromatic satellite imagery to map the land cover and terrain features which affect radio transmissions that carry wireless conversations. Designers are finding that as image resolution increases, so does the accuracy of their maps, which translates into clearer signals and fewer dropped calls for customers. Wireless engineers have been using satellite imagery for several years to design cellular coverage areas, relying on interpretation skills from the industry to provide ground clutter and topographic maps.

Clutter Maps Linear Feature Maps Visibility Maps DEMs Perspective maps

Utilities Remote sensing data can be embedded in GIS systems used for planning and monitoring of pipelines, roads, technological networks and plants. The most requested products are therefore cartography, specific thematic and morphological maps, DEMs. When dealing with the monitoring of large areas, satellite data are always a cost-effective solution. Different scales are required for planning and monitoring, and, at the moment, satellite data fits better the requirements of the planning phase, where medium-scale knowledge of the territory is needed. In the monitoring phase, the satellite contribution is important for change detection.

DEMs Cartography Road and Infrastructure Maps Corridor thematic maps (land use, risk etc.) Geo-Morphological Maps Change Detection Maps