General Friday August 17, 2012 15:00
As the Philippines struggles with devastating floods, the Asian Institute of Technology (AIT) has emerged as the focal point of an international effort to produce satellite imagery and high resolution maps to aid disaster relief operations.
Dr. Masahiko Nagai, Associate Director of AIT’s Geoinformatics Center (GIC/AIT), is spearheading efforts to create up-to-date satellite-generated maps for scientists at the Manila Observatory and National Institute of Geological Sciences, University of the Philippines.
Collaborating with a number of space agencies from around the world, Dr. Nagai analyzed satellite images of Metro Manila and Luzon Island taken before and during the height of the flood. His team on August 14 produced a color-coded, high-resolution composite image map of highly flooded areas.
AIT is a member of Sentinel Asia, which is a regional network for supporting disaster management activities in the Asia-Pacific region by applying space-based technology, such as earth observation satellites data.
The Japanese expert received Radar Satellite images from the Canadian Space Agency (CSA) and the German Aerospace Center (DLR). High-resolution images from the United States Geological Survey (USGS) provided details of the extent of flooding in Manila, while France’s Centre National d'?tudes Spatiales (CNES) helped map areas just north of the capital region.
Dr. Nagai also received data from the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO), DMC International Imaging Ltd (DMCii), UK, Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA), and Taiwan’s National Space Organization (NSPO).
Details on the Disaster Charter are available at this link: http://www.disasterscharter.org/web/charter/activation_details?p_r_p_1415474252_assetId=ACT-400 and about Sentinel at this link: https://sentinel.tksc.jaxa.jp/sentinel2/thumbnailEmob.action?subset_name=Emergency+Observation&requestId=ERPHMO000006