250 Village resources centres by March end
As many as 250 Village Resource Centres (VRCs), aimed at providing
locale-specifi c information to rural population by effectively using
satellite techonology, will be set up in the country by March end this year,
Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) chairman G Madhavan Nair said. www.newkerala.com
Indian Remote Sensing Satellite,IRS-1C, completes ten years
The Indian Remote Sensing satellite, IRS-1C, launched on December
28, 1995, has completed ten years of operation. It carried a unique
combination of three state-ofthe-art cameras – a Panchromatic
Camera with a spatial resolution of 5.8 metre, a Linear Imaging Self
Scanner-3 with a resolution of 23 metre and a Wide Field Sensor with
a resolution of 188 metre. When it was launched, IRS-1C was the most
advanced civilian remote sensing satellite. This satellite was launched
into a polar sun-synchronous orbit of 817 km by the Russian Molniya Launch Vehicle.
Thai fi rm to launch online satellite maps
A system similar to Google Earth has been developed to conduct satellite
mapping for Thailand. Beginning next month, Digital Thailand would
begin distributing satellite maps in the form of CDs on request, said Paisal
Santithammanont, of Chulalongkorn University’s Faculty of Engineering.
The on-line version of the map would also be made available to
the various organisations. Both services would be free of charge for
maps taken of the general terrains, he said.
Japan’s ALOS in orbit: ESA will deliver data to Europe
ALOS, Japan’s latest Earth Observation satellite, was successfully
launched at 02:33 CET (10:33 Japan time) on 24 January. Environmental
data and imagery from ALOS will be provided to European and African
users through a cooperative agreement between ESA and the Japan Aerospace
Exploration Agency (JAXA). The Advanced Land Observing
Satellite (ALOS) is a four-tonne satellite dedicated to land-based
Earth Observation. It was lifted off from the Tanegashima Space
Centre on an H-IIA launch vehicle, which will deliver ALOS into a 700-
km polar orbit.
Alcatel Alenia Space delivers data acquisition systems
Alcatel Alenia Space announced the delivery of Earth observation data
acquisition systems to the China State Radio Monitoring Center (CSRMC),
the national Chinese network of Earth observation stations. This equipment
will be located in three satellite data reception stations operated by the CSRMC.
Pilotless remote sensing aircraft developed in China
China’s fi rst 50kg-class pilotless remote sensing system TJ-1, an
important fruit of the 863 Program, was successfully developed in
Qingdao. The TJ-1 pilotless aircraft is 2.4 meters long and 0.9 meters
high with wingspan of 4.2 meters. With ceiling of 3,000 meters and
controlled radius of 100 km, the aircraft can fl y at 100 km per
hour for four hours continuously.
Satellite images reveal threats from deforestation
The mountains of Asia, including the Himalaya, are facing accelerating
threats from a rapid rise in roads, settlements, overgrazing and
deforestation that could worsen the impact of climate change and
threaten water supply in China, Southeast Asia and northern India.
The report, The Fall of Water, was published by the IUCN and UNEP
with support from the Kathmandu based International Centre for
Integrated Mountain Development (ICIMOD) and the Chinese Academy of Sciences.
Sri Lanka uses satellites for disaster management
Geo-Informatic Society of Sri Lanka of the Post Graduate Institute of
Agriculture University of Peradeniya has forwarded a project report to
Scientifi c Affairs Minister Professor Tissa Vitharana for the establishment
of a Remote Sensing Technology Centre with the view to utilise
Satellite Technology for disaster management.
Vietnam’s fi rst satellite photo receiver to be built
Vietnam will build its first satellite photo receiving station in Hanoi in
early 2006. The station will initially provide satellite photos free of
charge, and will be managed by the Remote Sensing Centre as part
of a system supervising natural resources and environment.
Le Minh, Director of the Centre, said that construction would be complete
this year, for experimental operational by mid-2007. It is funded by the
European Space Committee in France, and will save Vietnam millions of
dollars annually on buying satellite photos.
SPOT Image awarded USGS Contract
SPOT Image Corporation has been awarded a contract by the
US Geological Survey (USGS) for the purchase of satellite imagery
products and services. The SPOT satellite constellation collects
imagery ranging from 2.5m to 20m, from any location on Earth.
SPOT imagery applications include map updating, creation of 3D terrain
models, land-use and environmental analyses, and disaster response.