Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Greeks get space-based help in wake of deadly fires

24.09.2007
Cleanup and rebuilding teams responding to the devastation across Greece caused by this summer’s deadly fires are getting help from space. A series of crisis map products based on satellite acquisitions of affected areas are being provided to aid damage assessment efforts following the activation of the International Charter on Space and Major Disasters.

More than 60 people were killed and thousands left homeless in the worst forest fires to hit Greece in decades. According to data from ESA’s ERS-2 and Envisat satellites, which continuously survey fires burning across the Earth’s surface with onboard sensors, Greece experienced more wildfire activity this August than other European countries experienced over the last decade.

In an effort to aid authorities responding to disasters such as this, ESA and other national space agencies established the International Charter on Space and Major Disasters in 2000 to provide rush access to a broad range of satellite data.

The Charter, activated by the Department of Emergency Planning and Response of the Greek Civil Protection Agency, processed this request and recruited the German Aerospace Centre (DLR) and the Strasbourg-based rapid mapping specialist company (SERTIT) to produce the maps using satellite images provided by the space agencies.

As a result, the Greek Civil Protection Agency received a series of Earth Observation (EO)-based crisis/damage mapping products generated using a variety of EO sensors. The first EO-based maps, delivered while the fires were still active, were overview products based on the Medium Resolution Imaging Spectrometer (MERIS) instrument aboard ESA’s Envisat satellite. French and German Civil Protections active in Greece to support fire fighting teams also received the maps.

These maps were used for fighting active fires across Greece, particularly those in the region of the Parnonas Mountains, which rise to almost 2000 metres on the eastern side of the Peloponnese peninsula that makes up southern Greece.

"These map products proved to be very helpful for managing the severe fires that Greece suffered," Fivos Theodorou, Director for Emergency Planning and Response of the General Secretariat for Civil Protection, said. "The General Secretariat for Civil Protection intends to use these maps for post-fire management purposes, such as burnt area mapping, reforestation and the construction of flood prevention projects and supply them to the Greek authorities, such as the Greek Forest Service, responsible for consequence management."

DLR performed this service under the scope of the Risk-EOS service network. Risk-EOS, part of ESA's initial Services Element of Global Monitoring for Environment and Security (GMES), offers EO-based operational services for rapid mapping of major disasters as well as other geo-information services to support risk management of hazards such as floods and forest fires.

The Risk EOS service network and its Greek partner, National Observatory of Athens (NOA), are now working closely with Greek authorities to consolidate further the work done by the Charter on the affected areas.

Other satellites used to produce the maps include NASA’s Landsat, the SAC-C (an international cooperative mission between NASA and the Argentine Commission on Space Activities (CONAE), CNES, the Brazilian Space Agency, the Danish Space Research Institute and the Italian Space Agency), CNES’s SPOT satellite and Taiwan’s FORMOSAT satellite.

Other Charter members currently include the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO), the US National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), the Argentine Space Agency (CONAE), the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA), the British National Space Centre/Disaster Monitoring Constellation (BNSC/DMC), the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) and the China National Space Administration (CNSA).

Mariangela D'Acunto | alfa
Further information:
http://www.esa.int/esaEO/SEMESYB1S6F_index_0.html

More articles from Ecology, The Environment and Conservation:

nachricht Dispersal of Fish Eggs by Water Birds – Just a Myth?
19.02.2018 | Universität Basel

nachricht Removing fossil fuel subsidies will not reduce CO2 emissions as much as hoped
08.02.2018 | International Institute for Applied Systems Analysis (IIASA)

All articles from Ecology, The Environment and Conservation >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

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

Im Focus: Explanation for puzzling quantum oscillations has been found

So-called quantum many-body scars allow quantum systems to stay out of equilibrium much longer, explaining experiment | Study published in Nature Physics

Recently, researchers from Harvard and MIT succeeded in trapping a record 53 atoms and individually controlling their quantum state, realizing what is called a...

Im Focus: Dozens of binaries from Milky Way's globular clusters could be detectable by LISA

Next-generation gravitational wave detector in space will complement LIGO on Earth

The historic first detection of gravitational waves from colliding black holes far outside our galaxy opened a new window to understanding the universe. A...

Im Focus: Entangled atoms shine in unison

A team led by Austrian experimental physicist Rainer Blatt has succeeded in characterizing the quantum entanglement of two spatially separated atoms by observing their light emission. This fundamental demonstration could lead to the development of highly sensitive optical gradiometers for the precise measurement of the gravitational field or the earth's magnetic field.

The age of quantum technology has long been heralded. Decades of research into the quantum world have led to the development of methods that make it possible...

Im Focus: Computer-Designed Customized Regenerative Heart Valves

Cardiovascular tissue engineering aims to treat heart disease with prostheses that grow and regenerate. Now, researchers from the University of Zurich, the Technical University Eindhoven and the Charité Berlin have successfully implanted regenerative heart valves, designed with the aid of computer simulations, into sheep for the first time.

Producing living tissue or organs based on human cells is one of the main research fields in regenerative medicine. Tissue engineering, which involves growing...

Im Focus: Light-induced superconductivity under high pressure

A team of scientists of the Max Planck Institute for the Structure and Dynamics of Matter (MPSD) at the Center for Free-Electron Laser Science in Hamburg investigated optically-induced superconductivity in the alkali-doped fulleride K3C60under high external pressures. This study allowed, on one hand, to uniquely assess the nature of the transient state as a superconducting phase. In addition, it unveiled the possibility to induce superconductivity in K3C60 at temperatures far above the -170 degrees Celsius hypothesized previously, and rather all the way to room temperature. The paper by Cantaluppi et al has been published in Nature Physics.

Unlike ordinary metals, superconductors have the unique capability of transporting electrical currents without any loss. Nowadays, their technological...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

VideoLinks
Industry & Economy
Event News

Save the date: Forum European Neuroscience – 07-11 July 2018 in Berlin, Germany

02.05.2018 | Event News

Invitation to the upcoming "Current Topics in Bioinformatics: Big Data in Genomics and Medicine"

13.04.2018 | Event News

Unique scope of UV LED technologies and applications presented in Berlin: ICULTA-2018

12.04.2018 | Event News

 
Latest News

Supersonic waves may help electronics beat the heat

18.05.2018 | Power and Electrical Engineering

Keeping a Close Eye on Ice Loss

18.05.2018 | Information Technology

CrowdWater: An App for Flood Research

18.05.2018 | Information Technology

VideoLinks
Science & Research
Overview of more VideoLinks >>>