Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:


Snowmelt monitored in the Baltic Sea watershed region in near real time

As spring melt of winter snow is underway in the Baltic Sea watershed region, satellites are monitoring and mapping the snow melting process to help local authorities manage water supplies and predict and prepare for floods. Remote sensing is the only technique capable of providing a comprehensive view over such a large area.

Within the context of ESA’s Polar View programme, funded through the Earthwatch GMES Service Element (GSE), the Finnish Environment Institute (SYKE) is using images from Earth observation satellites to provide snow maps of Finland, Sweden, Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania and parts of Western Russia and Belarus from the beginning of March until the end of May.

Satellite images are downlinked to the Arctic Research Centre of the Finnish Meteorological Institute (FMI) and then passed on to SYKE, which takes the image data and processes it further to create the snow maps.

SYKE's snow-mapping method produces information on fractional snow coverage for all non-mountainous areas, even heavily forested spots, with fine resolution. The maps are published on the SYKE website as soon as they are compiled, usually within four to five hours of satellite overpass.

Because snow is vital to the water cycle, predicting when and how snow will melt and be released into local ecosystems is very useful. For instance several Finnish regional environment centres and the Estonian Meteorological Institute are using the snow maps on a daily basis for hydrological modelling, flood forecasting and water resources management.

The snow maps are also used by the commercial sector for activities such as managing hydroelectric power production and estimating how much time is left in the season for winter sports.

In 2008, the mapping project will expand to include parts of Poland.

Mariangela D'Acunto | alfa
Further information:

More articles from Earth Sciences:

nachricht Receding glaciers in Bolivia leave communities at risk
20.10.2016 | European Geosciences Union

nachricht UM researchers study vast carbon residue of ocean life
19.10.2016 | University of Miami Rosenstiel School of Marine & Atmospheric Science

All articles from Earth Sciences >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: New 3-D wiring technique brings scalable quantum computers closer to reality

Researchers from the Institute for Quantum Computing (IQC) at the University of Waterloo led the development of a new extensible wiring technique capable of controlling superconducting quantum bits, representing a significant step towards to the realization of a scalable quantum computer.

"The quantum socket is a wiring method that uses three-dimensional wires based on spring-loaded pins to address individual qubits," said Jeremy Béjanin, a PhD...

Im Focus: Scientists develop a semiconductor nanocomposite material that moves in response to light

In a paper in Scientific Reports, a research team at Worcester Polytechnic Institute describes a novel light-activated phenomenon that could become the basis for applications as diverse as microscopic robotic grippers and more efficient solar cells.

A research team at Worcester Polytechnic Institute (WPI) has developed a revolutionary, light-activated semiconductor nanocomposite material that can be used...

Im Focus: Diamonds aren't forever: Sandia, Harvard team create first quantum computer bridge

By forcefully embedding two silicon atoms in a diamond matrix, Sandia researchers have demonstrated for the first time on a single chip all the components needed to create a quantum bridge to link quantum computers together.

"People have already built small quantum computers," says Sandia researcher Ryan Camacho. "Maybe the first useful one won't be a single giant quantum computer...

Im Focus: New Products - Highlights of COMPAMED 2016

COMPAMED has become the leading international marketplace for suppliers of medical manufacturing. The trade fair, which takes place every November and is co-located to MEDICA in Dusseldorf, has been steadily growing over the past years and shows that medical technology remains a rapidly growing market.

In 2016, the joint pavilion by the IVAM Microtechnology Network, the Product Market “High-tech for Medical Devices”, will be located in Hall 8a again and will...

Im Focus: Ultra-thin ferroelectric material for next-generation electronics

'Ferroelectric' materials can switch between different states of electrical polarization in response to an external electric field. This flexibility means they show promise for many applications, for example in electronic devices and computer memory. Current ferroelectric materials are highly valued for their thermal and chemical stability and rapid electro-mechanical responses, but creating a material that is scalable down to the tiny sizes needed for technologies like silicon-based semiconductors (Si-based CMOS) has proven challenging.

Now, Hiroshi Funakubo and co-workers at the Tokyo Institute of Technology, in collaboration with researchers across Japan, have conducted experiments to...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>



Event News

#IC2S2: When Social Science meets Computer Science - GESIS will host the IC2S2 conference 2017

14.10.2016 | Event News

Agricultural Trade Developments and Potentials in Central Asia and the South Caucasus

14.10.2016 | Event News

World Health Summit – Day Three: A Call to Action

12.10.2016 | Event News

Latest News

Resolving the mystery of preeclampsia

21.10.2016 | Health and Medicine

Stanford researchers create new special-purpose computer that may someday save us billions

21.10.2016 | Information Technology

From ancient fossils to future cars

21.10.2016 | Materials Sciences

More VideoLinks >>>