GeoWorld October 2011

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NEWSLINK Vehicle-Based Mapping System Aids Post-Quake Work in Japan Japanese geospatial-solutions firm Asia Air Survey turned to a vehicle-based laser-mapping system to help assess damage caused by the earthquake that rattled eastern Japan in March 2011. Asia Air Survey is using a laser-mapping system known as "StreetMapper," the product of a joint-development venture between U.K.-based 3D Laser Mapping and IGI, a German guidance and navigation specialist. Asia Air Survey purchased the solution from Mirukuru, a distribu- tor and partner of 3D Laser Mapping. Asia Air Survey has been using StreetMapper (branded anew as "Geomaster Neo") to capture highly detailed 3-D survey data. The company, its clients and partners are using the data to assess the struc- tural damage caused by the earthquake and resulting tsunami. Data also are playing a role in determining the effects of soil liquefaction. Soil data are important because much of the land in the disaster-affected areas has been reclaimed from the sea. Asia Air Survey captured 100 kilometers of survey data using the new system, and it's now working to quantify structural damage from the earthquake and measure tsunami water levels as indicated by debris elevations and stains left on structures. Ultimately, information gleaned should help Japanese officials and engineers rebuild after the quake as well as assess future vulner- abilities and prepare emergency-response plans. Agencies and Private Sector Freshen Up Fire Maps As wildfires raced across the state of Texas in early September 2011, governmental and private-sector mapping specialists continued to disseminate a variety of maps and related information to aid residents, first responders, emergency planners and other partners. The National Interagency Fire Center, a multiagency support center for wildland firefighting, offered a host of maps for the Texas fires as well as fires elsewhere in the nation. Map products and services include Geographic Area Coordination Centers, GeoMac Spatial Mapping, a Large Fire Map, National Fire Weather Forecasts, National Wildland Fire Outlook, National Interagency Airspace, NOAA Satellite Fire Detection, U.S. Forest Service Fire Imaging and U.S. Drought Monitor. In addition, Esri made available via its Web site a multipurpose wildfire map that includes data layers for wildfire potential, precipitation, fire locations and fire perimeters. The map (available at www. latest-news-map.html) also includes a feature for pulling in fire-related information and comments from social networks, tying the information and comments to specific fire locations. U.N. Arm Selects Service for Monitoring Events The United Nations Institute for Training and Research (UNITAR) subscribed to a service from imagery provider DigitalGlobe that will allow the UN unit to enhance its ability to monitor events worldwide. UNITAR will be using DigitalGlobe's FirstLook global event-monitoring service for the institute's Operational Satellite Applications Program (UNOSAT). By adding the service, UNOSAT personnel should Laser-scanning images provide a piece of the puzzle for assessing street-level structural damage as a result of the March 2011 earthquake and tsunami in eastern Japan. 6 GEO W ORLD / OCT O BE R 2O11 be able to get updated high-resolution satellite imagery and associated information for a region within hours after a crisis occurs. The FirstLook service is provided through DigitalGlobe's "Cloud Services" platform, offering users online access and the ability 3D LASER MAPPING

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