Monday, December 29, 2008

DMCii, UK, launches free satellite imaging initiative

22/12/2008 UK: Satellite imaging provider DMCii has announced that it will provide free DMC constellation satellite imagery for scientists to support global environmental monitoring projects.

Scientists are invited to compete for the opportunity to use the DMC multi-spectral data in their research projects. Applications will be judged on their contribution to international environmental research by an international panel of scientists chaired by Professor Alan O’Neil from the National Centre for Earth Observation. DMC constellation data will be awarded to 5 UK and 5 Spanish science projects. The provision of data will be coordinated by DMCii in the UK and Spanish company Deimos Imaging in Spain which will soon join the DMC with its new satellite DEIMOS-1.

Dave Hodgson, Managing Director DMCii commented, “We feel that this is a unique and valuable contribution to the science community, and look forward to supporting some deserving scientific research that will contribute to our knowledge of the Earth and our impact on its resources.”

Satellite imaging is a powerful tool for monitoring land use. It offers a valuable “eye in space” for monitoring and recording environmental change on a global basis. DMCii has previously provided free data to the science community, from which scientists have produced excellent results which include monitoring the burning of peatlands in Indonesia.

The DMC constellation of 5 satellites work together to image large areas of the Earth. Because several satellites and their respective owners (Algeria, China, Nigeria, Turkey, UK) cooperate together, the constellation can image a given geographical location frequently to identify changes or make the most of cloud-free periods. This unique combination makes the constellation highly effective for monitoring land use.

Source :

Friday, December 19, 2008

Haryana, India to use remote sensing for monitoring drought

Chandigarh, India: Haryana government is planning to use remote sensing satellites for monitoring drought situation in the state, an official spokesman said here.

He said a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) had been signed between Hisar based Haryana Space Application Centre (HARSAC), an autonomous body of Science and Technology, Haryana and National Remote Sensing Centre (NRSC) Hyderabad to monitor the drought situation at block level.

Advance Wide Image Field Sensor data from resource satellite of India would be used for the purpose, he added. After analysing and interpreting the satellite data acquired at frequent intervals, a monthly bulletin, indicating the situation in each block, would be prepared.

The bulletin would be circulated to all departments so that required contingency measures to save the crops in the susceptible blocks could be taken, he said. He said the project, a milestone in drought management, would be taken up jointly by HARSAC and NRSC for three years after which the technology would be transferred to HARSAC. 

Source :

Monday, December 15, 2008

CRRI’s 'Hawk Eye' on Indian roads

At first sight, one can mistake this vehicle to be an ultra tech robotic remote-controlled vehicle, but it is the country's first 'Hawk Eye' that is surveying almost 50,000 kilometres of country's highways and roads to gauge their quality and see if they are fit for freight movement and travel. The database will be used to create GIS maps of highways in the country. The project is being undertaken by Central Road Research Institute (CRRI) and GIS survey and global positioning system (GPS) will help better navigation across the country. 

Mounted on a jeep, the Hawk Eye's instrumentation system includes a laser profiler along with pavement view cameras to measure road surface, collect and process digital images of pavements and other roadside elements. The vehicle has been used in countries like China, Malaysia, Singapore, South Korea and Thailand. Hawk Eye requires high-speed paved roads for operation and is sensitive to rough weather conditions like dust storms and heavy rains. It can gather data while travelling at a speed of 30 to 100 km per hour. 

An advantage Hawk Eye enjoys over other instruments with CRRI is its ability to look at the surface of the road and measure cracking areas. Any area with a crack of above three centimetres is detected by the vehicle's sensors and a preventive measure is suggested by the computers. This helps improve life of highways, which is normally around 20 years in the case of bitumen roads.

Source :

Friday, December 12, 2008

Fishy project to save Indian lake

 Thousands of fish have been released into a picturesque lake in India's northern Nainital in an attempt to restore the areas lost grandeur.

Nainital is a hill resort 2,000 meters above the sea level in Kumaon hills. It's known as the "Switzerland of India" because of its picturesque lakes. 

But Naini lake has become severely polluted in recent years as result of the region's numerous tourists and the urban waste which has been dumped in the water. 

Many fish have died and this new project is attempting to redress the balance.

Saturday, December 6, 2008

Ethiopia: Addis Gets New Map Containing Details like Minibus Routes

Ethio-German Urban Governance and Decentralization Program together with the Ethiopian Mapping Agency (EMA) launched a newly produced comprehensive Addis Ababa city map that shows minibus routs.

Briefing journalists, producers of the map said the city map provides a detailed overview of the whole city indicating official street names, major landmarks and selected heritage sites. A unique feature of the new map, according to the producers, is the first Addis Ababa mini bus route map that immensely helps tourists and navigates easily around the city.

Speaking at the launching ceremony, Sultan Mohammed, Director General of EMA, indicated the map is a five in one product "The map is a five in one product that contains: the line map of Addis Ababa with a scale of 1:20,000, a satellite image of the central part of Addis Ababa with a scale of 1:6,000, a line map of the surroundings of Addis Ababa with a scale of 1:~1.3 million, a minibus route map and some landmark architectural heritage sites in Addis Ababa," explained Sultan.

"From the outset, we had agreed that the map produced in this cooperative arrangement should be of German quality, as German quality is recognized as the best by almost all in the world," Sultan added.

Prof. Meissner and his team from the University of Applied Science Berlin have been responsible for the cartographic work, while the EMA participated in the project in editing and field verification of the map.

Even though primarily intended for tourists, Director General of Ethiopian Mapping Authority, added the map is also a useful tool for the citizens of Addis Ababa to help them navigate through their fast growing and developing city.

"It is also an important instrument for city officials in their development planning and the promotion of good governance." He said the price would be 50 ETB + VAT.

Dr. Claas Knoop, Ambassador of the Federal Republic of Germany in the Federal Democratic Republic of Ethiopia, on his part said different sources were used to provide up-dated information for inhabitants and guests of Addis Ababa.

To make the City Map most completed, the ambassador said the new map included the final version of the road network provided by Addis Ababa Roads Authority.

"The NGO Addis Woubet and research by Dr. Omnia Aboukorah and GTZ provided information about interesting architectural heritage sites," the ambassador said, adding CIM Expert Michael Maiwald has ensured the correct street names.

Source :

Thursday, December 4, 2008

A global view of HIV infection

To mark World AIDS Day on December 1, GfK GeoMarketing provided a map that illustrates the global distribution of HIV cases (data source: WHO/GfK GeoMarketing; map: GfK GeoMarketing).

According to the latest statistics from the World Health Organization (WHO), the highest rates of infection occur in southern Africa and the Russian Federation.

Monday, December 1, 2008

Israel plans launch of nano-satellites as low cost alternative to GPS satellites

Israel plans to launch its first nano-satellite next year to demonstrate its feasibility at a fraction of the cost of standard GPS satellites. The Israel Nanosatellite Association intends to launch the first of two nano-satellites in mid-2009 from India. 

The association said the launches, planned for between July and September, would demonstrate the feasibility of the platforms. "This will be a proof-of-concept for new Israeli satellite technologies," INSA director Raz Tamir said.

Tamir, also manager of the new nano-satellite department of the state-owned Israel Aerospace Industries, said the micro-platforms could replace standard satellites in space. He said the satellites, meant to be designed and assembled within a year, could weigh up to 10 kilograms and cheap to produce. 

Source :

Thursday, November 27, 2008

UAE poised to get its first dedicated eye in the sky

UAE's first remote sensing/Earth Observation satellite, is all set to launch, a senior official said on Sunday. 

"The UAE's first earth observation satellite, developed by South Korea's SatrecI with in-depth participation of UAE engineers from the Emirates Institution for Advanced Science and Technology (EIAST) and is "space ready" and will be launch-ed shortly, Salem Humaid Al Merri, acting project manager of DubaiSat 1 Programme told Gulf News on Sunday.

He was speaking on the sidelines of the Global Space Technology Forum, opened by Shaikh Nahyan Bin Mubarak Al Nahyan, Minister of Higher Education and Scientific Research, in Abu Dhabi on Sunday. 

Al Merri explained that the satellite was completed last July and is on standby, waiting for launch aboard a Russian rocket through the Moscow-based International Space Company (ISC) Kosmotras, "providing the UAE with its first dedicated eye in the sky." 
"While DubaiSat-1 awaits its launch into space, its development team is already working on finalising designs for DubaiSat-2, which will be launched within five years and will continue with its plans to create the UAE's first constellation of Satellites with growing UAE's technical participation."

Al Merri said the design concept of DubaiSat-2 is being laid down and strategic partners for its construction are being selected, to make it the top of its class by the time of its planned launch in 2013.

Established by a Dubai Government decree in 2006 to promote the country's move to develop a knowledge-based economy, EIAST continues to be a springboard for promoting sustainable development and enhancing econ-omic growth in the Emirates and beyond by inspiring scientific innovation and fostering technological advancement.

Al Merri said developing a base of UAE scientists and engineers is a crucial first step in becoming a regional and global leader in the fields of advanced science and technology. 

He added that the satellite will contribute in developing infrastructure by providing data that help decision makers in many areas, including planning service projects, rural and urban projects, provision of accurate maps, monitoring of pollution and discovery of oil slicks, crisis management, scientific researches and space sciences. 

Professor Anwar S. Dawood, former EIAST dean of scientific and technological affairs and member of the board of directors, told Gulf News the UAE should have a federal space agency that will host the development of space strategic plan for the country, and coordinate different space activities as related to satellites, communications, earth observation and navigation.

"The UAE is in a position to take a lead in the Gulf and the Middle East in space technology, to fill a huge market demand for a variety of civil and military applications," he said.

Innovation: Technology a priority
The UAE is strongly committed to harnessing the benefits of technology, Shaikh Nahyan Bin Mubarak Al Nahyan, Minister of Higher Education and Scientific Research, said on Sunday. 

"Our capital city, Abu Dhabi, is emerging as a major centre for aviation and aerospace innovation and industry. President His Highness Shaikh Khalifa Bin Zayed Al Nahyan has identified innovation as a fundamental aspect of our national effort. And we have created an economic environment that supports business initiatives and entrepreneurship," the minister said. 

Source : 

Friday, November 14, 2008

International Conference on Resource Development and Environmental Change

Department of Geography,Aligarh Muslim University, Aligarh,India is
organising an INTERNATIONAL CONFERENCE On Resource Development and
Environmental Change: Emerging Issues and Challenges on 27th to 29th
January, 2009. Detail info can be found on

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Microsoft launches Live Search Maps for India

Microsoft India on Monday launched Live Search Maps for India that offers users access to detailed listings and street maps for 9 Cities, business listings across 29 Cities and access to highway networks to 20,000 cities and towns. Live Search Maps for India is on Microsoft’s Live Search Service, thereby allowing users to search for geographical information, places of general interest and business listings both on the PC and Mobile at and This is the first version of its local mapping service for India with the key features developed by the Microsoft India Development Centre (MSIDC) based in Hyderabad.

Speaking on the launch, Rishi Srivastava, Consumer & Online Marketing Operations Head, Microsoft India, said, “We are proud to launch Live Search Maps for users in our country. This is the first version of Live Search Maps for India and Microsoft will continue to introduce new features and improvements in the near future to meet emerging needs of consumers. Over the last two years, Microsoft has made significant investments into research and development for Live Search, acquired global resources and introduced several new features which we believe are extremely relevant and will deliver great value to our users. Live Search Maps will be accessible on the PC and the mobile, thus ensuring that users get the information they need anytime”.

Users can now access on their PC or Mobile
Addresses, roads, localities, landmarks, detailed street maps and places of general interest like monuments, restaurants, hotels and other places of interest across 9 Indian cities - Delhi, Mumbai, Chennai, Kolkata, Bangalore, Hyderabad, Pune, Ahmedabad, and Jaipur.

Business listings across 29 major Indian cities such as Mumbai, Delhi, Pune, Bangalore, Hyderabad, Chennai, Ahmedabad, Kolkata, Agra, Allahabad, Amritsar, Bhubaneshwar, Chandigarh, Cochin, Coimbatore, Jaipur, Jalandhar, Kanpur, Lucknow, Ludhiana, Mangalore, Nagpur, Nasik, Patiala, Patna, Rajkot, Surat, Vadodara and Vishakapatnam.

Basic geographical information on the national road network of India across 20,000 cities and towns.

Key features of Live Search Maps for India include Street Maps, Location Search, Business Listing Search, Routing or Directions for Navigation and options for users to print, share collections through email, blogs on Windows Live. “After recent innovations for Live Search such as Image Search, Video Search, Local Search, xRank and Instant Answers, we have rolled out Live Search Maps on our search platform to enable people to learn, discover, and explore specific locations in India”, said Rishi Srivastava.

Source :

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

India on the moon: Chandrayaan-1 Launch successful

Chandrayaan-1, India’s maiden moon spacecraft, was put into Transfer Orbit around the earth by the Polar Launch Vehicle PSLV-C11 after it blasted off from the Satish Dhawan Space Centre.

The 1,380 kg Chandrayaan-1, carrying 11 payloads, was released into a Transfer Orbit 18.2 minutes after the PSLV-C11 blasted off.

After a series of procedures over the next two weeks, the spacecraft would reach its desired Lunar orbit and placed at a height of 100 km from the Lunar surface, marking the operational phase of the mission which would put India in the elite lunar club.

Earlier, at the end of the 49-hour countdown, the 44.4 meter tall four-stage PSLV-11 lifted off from the second launch pad into a cloudy sky......

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Ban on commercial use of GPS in Egypt

Technology lovers and modern car owners in Egypt consider themselves unlucky because of a government ban on the usage of Global Positioning System (GPS) technology. 

Telecoms Law 10/2003 outlaws the import of GPS-equipped mobile phones, and retailers found selling them could lead to the confiscation of their entire stock. The same applies to any kind of commercial use of GPS technology, which includes cars equipped with GPS devices.

Mobile phones like the Nokia N95, N82 as well as iPhones and some 3G phones are banned in Egypt, leaving the market deprived of the latest technology and features that are fast becoming standard in the new generation of mobile phones.

GPS helps users navigate to their destination inside cities and in remote areas. It also functions as a guide for places of interest as well as hospitals, police departments and businesses.

Monday, October 6, 2008

Wealth map of the world

When you look at the map of the world, what do you see? Probably a cosy agglomeration of nations that is imprinted on your brain – reinforced time and time again from its pride of place on everything from classroom wall to newspaper graphic to in-flight magazines. 

This projection of the Earth – a great mass of Russia across the top, a slightly oversized UK on the edge of Europe, impenetrable China and Mongolia on the right, the expanse of America on the left, with Africa centre-bottom – is an image as strong as the Union Jack, the London Underground logo or the Olympic rings. Except it represents only a basic truth about the world, one that has been with us in essentially the same form since the Flemish cartographer Gerardus Mercator created his Mercator projection in 1569. 

Now, though, three academics – a professor and research assistant from Sheffield and another professor from the University of Michigan – have produced The Atlas of the Real World, a book that at first glance looks like a whole bunch of world maps on acid. 

Except, you could argue, that these warped representations come closer to the truth about our planet than the originals on which they’re based. 

Daniel Dorling, professor of human geography at the University of Sheffield, Mark Newman, assistant professor of physics and complex systems at the University of Michigan, and Anna Barford, research associate at Sheffield, have created the website, on which the book is based, which bends and twists our continents according to statistics such as the number of elderly, international immigrants, grocery imports and even ¬demonstrations against the war in Iraq. 

“Because we’re confident people, we think we know what we’re seeing; you see a map and you think you understand it,” says Professor Dorling, 40. “But if you take a normal map of Britain and colour it by how popular the Labour Party is in each area, you wouldn’t be able to tell whether it was going to win the next election. Although you might know Britain very well, you don’t know it well enough to know the areas with high population density.” 

It was to overcome these problems that Dorling and his colleagues set about creating cartograms that offer up an image of a new world order in which the distribution of the planet’s rich and poor, drinking water, weapons and trade can be seen at a glance. 

He and the team who published The Atlas of the Real World identified regions – but not exact continents – from Western Europe to Japan to South Asia to northern Africa and colour-coded them, with the nations within them given different shades of that colour. Then, using statistics, principally from the United Nations but also other bodies including the World Bank, the CIA and the World Health Organisation, they manipulated the images so that regions expanded and contracted in relation to each other.

So when figures on net immigration, for example, are inputted to the worldmapper model, the USA and the UK become huge and bloated, while Africa and China almost disappear. Conversely, on a map of absolute poverty, Europe is all but invisible while Asia expands massively. 

The book contains 366 cartograms – the last one, almost charmingly, illustrating invertebrates at risk – that not only show us what we’d expect in the divisions in wealth, but also ignite surprising flares of unexpected social phenomena. 

So the map depicting decline in wealth, for example, showing the decline in GDP from 1975 to 2002 adjusted for local purchasing power, has the US, Western Europe and Japan all but invisible, but a hugely inflated Eastern Europe. 

While we might think that the end of Communism brought about huge increases in some ex-Soviet satellite nations, countries such as the Ukraine, Slovenia, the Czech Republic and Poland actually lead the way in the largest declines in wealth. (China, surprisingly, hasn’t been affected in the same way.) 

These images then allow us to draw what might otherwise be hidden conclusions about the world in which we live. A refugee map, for example, won’t, as you’d expect, display a greatly enlarged West. “Most refugees go over national rather than international borders,” explains Dorling. “The implication is that the burden on Africans to look after refugees is as great as it is for us.” An obvious contemporary example would be Zimbabweans in South Africa. The maps have applications in advocacy, too. A map showing how many votes nations get in the International Monetary Fund was used by African countries who wanted greater representation. 

Interestingly, when you zoom in on an area, it reverts to how it would look on a regular map, with its normal place on lines of latitude and longitude.

It is only as you pull out that those lines distort and the reader is given this vision of the world. 

“Although land mass is important, people are probably more important than area,” says Dorling. “In a map by population, a sixth of the world would be Chinese. You could have a world atlas where the Sahara just wouldn’t appear.” 


Saturday, October 4, 2008

LHC Computing Grid Can Teach the Internet a thing or two

Before the year is out, the LHC is projected to begin pumping out a tsunami of raw data equivalent to one DVD (five gigabytes) every five seconds. Its annual output of 15 petabytes (15 million gigabytes) will soon dwarf that of any other scientific experiment in history.

The challenge is making that data accessible to a scientist anywhere in the world at the execution of a few commands on her laptop. The solution is a global computer network called the LHC Computing Grid, and with any luck, it may be giving us a glimpse of the Internet of the future.

Once the LHC reaches full capacity sometime next year, it will be churning out snapshots of particle collisions by the hundreds every second, captured in four subterranean detectors standing from one and a half to eight stories tall.* It is the grid's job to find the extremely rare events—a bit of missing energy here, a pattern of particles there—that could solve lingering mysteries such as the origin of mass or the nature of dark matter.

A generation earlier, research fellow Tim Berners-Lee of the European Organization for Nuclear Research (CERN) set out to create a global "pool of information" to meet a similar challenge. Then, as now, hundreds of collaborators across the planet were all trying to stay on top of rapidly evolving data from CERN experiments. Berners-Lee's solution became the World Wide Web.

But the fire hose of data that is the LHC requires special treatment. "If I look at the LHC and what it's doing for the future," said David Bader, executive director of high performance computing at the Georgia Institute of Technology, "the one thing that the Web hasn't been able to do is manage a phenomenal wealth of data."

Tuesday, September 30, 2008

GIS professionals Needed

We are looking for GIS professionals (ASP.NET,PHP, C#, SQL Server,
having excellent exposure in .NET domain. Working Knowledge with
Excellent troubleshooting
and problem-solving skills, Hands on Exposure in GIS principles,
Should have proficiency in COM,PHP and .NET Framework (Windows and
Webapplication development)

Company:Kavin Corporation, Bangalore 
Salary : 13000-15000 
commitment: 15 months 
Refundable Deposit: 5000
Exprience:1+ yrs
Contact Information: 080-23329136, 23428327
kavin@kavintech. com,kavincorporation@

Monday, September 29, 2008

SatGuide launches 'Citizen Mapper’ in India

India - SatNav Technologies, a Hyderabad based IT Products Company; the pioneers of GPS Technology in India, today announced the launch of 'Citizen Mapper' – a GPS Enthusiast centric initiative aimed at rewarding the users for suggesting additional Points of Interest (POI’s) and also sharing updates on what changes occur in their city. POI’s are important landmarks such as Hospitals, ATM centers, Malls, Theaters which help in navigating easily to the end destination.

Users can visit and seek information on routes by filling the From and To fields. The website will then provide the route from the present location to the end destination. 

This route will have several Points of Interest. In case, the user notices or knows that some additional POI’s can be added to the route to make it easier to navigate, the user can send the input in the form of a mail to Other customers who already have SatGuide software on their Phones, Computers or Navigation devices can just send the feedback whenever they have anything to share. For example a new building that has come up, some new one ways that have been announced, a road that has been recently closed, etc. 

The feedback ensures that the user automatically gets registered on SatNav’s website and company then rewards the user by crediting Rs. 5 into that account, for every POI that gets incorporated in the map. Users can accumulate the rewards in units of Rs.5 and can then exchange the accumulated amount for various SatGuide products. This amount can also be transferred to family or friends who wish to purchase SatGuide products.

Another attractive package under the Citizen Mapper scheme is that once a user gets to 50 credits, he can also avail a free upgrade of SatGuide with maps for his PND, PDA, Phone, Laptop or Desktop. If he does not have the navigation software the upgrade will be available along with the next purchase, a value of over Rs 2000. 

Commenting on this, Mr. Amit Prasad, CEO and Founder MD of SatNav Technologies said, “Our pioneering effort in GPS has enabled us to provide the maximum number of POI’s giving the user greater detail for reaching the required destination easily. With this win-win scheme we have introduced, not only will we be rewarding the users for their inputs but also make our maps the most robust in the industry with regular updates. 

Additional POI’s and vicinity information coming directly from the users will ensure that our products become more relevant to every individual.” 

Source :

World's Biggest Atlas

click here

Global Warming:Europe is warming faster...

click here

Friday, September 26, 2008

Hi-tech PCR with geospatial techniques in New Delhi

Six days after Delhi was shaken by serial blasts and saw subsequent calls for modernisation of police force to combat terrorism, the hi-tech Central Police Control Room (CPCR) will be inaugurated on Friday at the Delhi Police headquarters at ITO. 

With over 500 PCR vans fitted with the latest Global Positioning System (GPS) and Geographic Information System (GIS) and an online city map installed in the CPCR to track the movement of these vehicles, senior cops are expecting that their fight against terrorism and the overall policing standard will get a major boost. 

Commissioner of Police Y S Dadwal said: "The new system would help us in achieving the maximum possible efficiency in attending to distress calls and will augment our capacity for better response to the citizens of Delhi. The project was in the pipeline for the past three years." 

The number of emergency phone lines — 100 — has also been doubled from 30 to 60 and this would enable people to report terrorist and criminal incidents without hindrance. 

Devised by HCL Technologies, the system will function on a call centre module. 

"Earlier, when someone used to call 100, it was first noted down and then fed into computer after which the information was sent to the PCR to move to the spot. In the new set-up, the call receiver would pass on information about any distress call to the despatch wireless operator, who would locate the PCR van closest to the place of occurrence on the digital map and direct it to attend to the call. It will improve the response time by 10 minutes to 

30 minutes," said a senior police officer. The wireless uplink for data transfer between a PCR van and CPCR will be facilitated by a GPS receiver, a Mobile Data Terminal and a General Pocket Radio Service (GPRS) or Code Division Multiple Access (CDMA) modem installed in the van. 

The technology would enable data storage, starting from receipt of distress calls to filing of the report by the PCR operator, thus making the entire exercise paperless and requiring lesser manpower. 

The screen reflecting the "real-time" position of a PCR van, even when it would be on the move, will also have updated information on the calls being attended to by each of the vehicles. The system would have an in-built mechanism to record distress calls and also the interaction among the receiver, dispatcher and operator for any future reference. It will also help in efficient management of the PCR vans as well as other police vehicles, curbing down their misuse as the man sitting in the CPCR will keep a track of the vehicles. 

"It will also be equipped with a system that will leave a message for the policemen if they are found busy," an officer said. There are 100 lines of MTNL which will be used for this purpose and in case some of the lines are not working, the system will not be paralysed as a backup plan from some private service provider will be present to support the system.The Delhi Police also plans to install GPS and GIS system in the official vehicles of SHOs, ACPs and DCPs. 

Source :

Sunday, September 21, 2008

Senior Consultant Needed

Job Location(s):
Andhra Pradesh - Hyderabad

People having strong experience on Aerial Triangulation, 3D Plannimmetry, Ortho Generation, total Photogrammetry suite can apply.
Additional Information
Salary: from $6,000.00 up to $10,000.00 per year
Position Type: Full Time, Employee
Required Education Level: Masters
Can discuss on eligibility
Marvel Geospatial Solutions Pvt Ltd

Phone Number: 91 40 66413225/6
Fax Number: 91 40 66759595
Mobile Number: 91 9246559595

click to apply

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

World's glaciers facing huge threat: UN

The United Nations said Monday that swathes of mountain ranges worldwide risk losing their glaciers by the end of the century if global warming continues at its projected rate.

The UN Environment Programme (UNEP) said in a report that whilst nature has always observed a certain periodic rate of deglaciation, the current trends observed from the Arctic to Central Europe and South America are of a different order.

"The ongoing trend of worldwide and rapid, if not accelerating, glacier shrinkage on the century time scale is most likely to be of a non-periodic nature, and may lead to the deglaciation of large parts of many mountain ranges by the end of the 21st century," the report warned.
read more

Tuesday, September 9, 2008

Needed:Cadet Spatial Information Officer

Cadet Spatial Information Officer
Job Location(s):
Queensland - Brisbane  
This role is only available to residents of Australia
or to those who hold valid working visas or permits

Reference: QLD/NRW7951/08

Department Of Natural Resources & Water
Woolloongabba / $28 839 - $42 625 p.a.

• Paid study leave and reimbursement of HELP fees
• Excellent employment opportunity in a team environment

NRW works with industry, community, land holders and government to ensure that the management of our natural resources is innovative, responsible and balanced.

This position provides opportunities for practical experience in the collection and management of fundamental land information datasets such as property data, topographic data and satellite/aerial imagery using the latest technologies and systems.

Enquires contact;
Laurie Glass
(07) 3896 3377

Closing Date: Monday, 22 September 2008

click here

Friday, September 5, 2008

Iran launch of Omid successful

Iran announced Sunday that it launched a satellite into space earlier in the day, the country's first domestically made.

The satellite, Omid (hope), was launched Sunday by using Safir (ambassador) satellite-carrier rocket, the armed forces said in a statement, quoted by the official IRNA news agency.

The Omid Satellite which was successfully fired on the birth anniversary of the last Imam (prophet) of Shiites, Hazrat Mahdi (who is believed to reappear at the end of the world) illustrated the auspicious name of the Imam in the space, IRNA said. 

According to Iran's English-language Press TV satellite channel, the domestically manufactured Omid Satellite will pass over the country six times a day.

The launch of Safir rocket aimed to test remote sensing, satellite telemetry, and geographic information system (GIS) technology as well as remote and ground station data processing, Press TV said.

Another news agency Fars quoted government spokesman Gholam- Hossein Elham as saying that President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad was at the launch of the communications satellite from Iran's space station.

In February, Iran said it has prepared for the satellite launch by sending a probe into space of a rocket on the mission.

Ahmadinejad announced in his press interview in Istanbul Friday that Iran would in near future launch its first domestic satellite to the space.

Iran, embroiled in a standoff with the West over its disputed nuclear ambitions, has pursued a space program for several years, according to media reports. 

Source :

Tuesday, September 2, 2008

ISRO to forecast crop behavior

ndia - Farmers can heave a sigh of relief as a forecast system will keep a tab on crop behaviour and, in case of failure, issue a warning before the beginning of the agriculture season. 

The Gokhale Institute of Politics and Economics has tied up with the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) for the project to forecast crop condition and drought-like situations with the help of satellite images. The project started last week. 

Satellite images of the ground where the crops are harvested will be matched, analysed and calculated with the data provided by the India Meteorological Department (IMD) and a conclusion will be arrived at. Initially, the project will be carried out in Karnataka on a pilot basis. Later, it will be implemented in other major agricultural states like Maharashtra. 

A three-member team of the Gokhale institute, headed by Rajas Parchure, joint director of the institute, will be part of the project. Works such as data analysis, forecasting and methodology will be done by the Gokhale institute team. 

“We will mainly receive three types of data — yield, satellite images and data from the IMD. This will be done for Rabi and kharif crops. The satellite images of the crop, right from harvesting to its final outcome, will be taken at various phases. These images will be compared with the rainfall data provided by the IMD and the yield of that particular crop from that particular field from where the image has been captured,” Parchure told TOI. 

Source :

Friday, August 29, 2008

Arctic sea ice drops to 2nd lowest level on record

 More ominous signs  have scientists saying that a global warming "tipping point" in the Arctic seems to be happening before their eyes: Sea ice in the Arctic Ocean is at its second lowest level in about 30 years.

The National Snow and Ice Data Center reported that sea ice in the Arctic now covers about 2.03 million square miles. The lowest point since satellite measurements began in 1979 was 1.65 million square miles set last September.With about three weeks left in the Arctic summer, this year could wind up breaking that previous record, scientists said.

Arctic ice always melts in summer and refreezes in winter. But over the years, more of the ice is lost to the sea with less of it recovered in winter. While ice reflects the sun's heat, the open ocean absorbs more heat and the melting accelerates warming in other parts of the world.

Sea ice also serves as primary habitat for threatened polar bears.

"We could very well be in that quick slide downward in terms of passing a tipping point," said senior scientist Mark Serreze at the data center in Boulder, Colo. "It's tipping now. We're seeing it happen now."

Within "five to less than 10 years," the Arctic could be free of sea ice in the summer, said NASA ice scientist Jay Zwally.

"It also means that climate warming is also coming larger and faster than the models are predicting and nobody's really taken into account that change yet," he said.

Five climate scientists, four of them specialists on the Arctic, told The Associated Press that it is fair to call what is happening in the Arctic a "tipping point." NASA scientist James Hansen, who sounded the alarm about global warming 20 years ago before Congress, said the sea ice melt "is the best current example" of that.

Last year was an unusual year when wind currents and other weather conditions coincided with global warming to worsen sea ice melt, Serreze said. Scientists wondered if last year was an unusual event or the start of a new and disturbing trend.

This year's results suggest the latter because the ice had recovered a bit more than usual thanks to a somewhat cooler winter, Serreze said. Then this month, when the melting rate usually slows, it sped up instead, he said.

The most recent ice retreat primarily reflects melt in the Chukchi Sea off Alaska's northwest coast and the East Siberian Sea off the coast of eastern Russia, according to the center.

The Chukchi Sea is home to one of two populations of Alaska polar bears.

Federal observers flying for a whale survey on Aug. 16 spotted nine polar bears swimming in open ocean in the Chukchi. The bears were 15 to 65 miles off the Alaska shore. Some were swimming north, apparently trying to reach the polar ice edge, which on that day was 400 miles away.

Polar bears are powerful swimmers and have been recorded on swims of 100 miles but the ordeal can leave them exhausted and susceptible to drowning.

And the melt in sea ice has kicked in another effect, long predicted, called "Arctic amplification," Serreze said.

That's when the warming up north is increased in a feedback mechanism and the effects spill southward starting in autumn, he said. Over the last few years, the bigger melt has meant more warm water that releases more heat into the air during fall cooling, making the atmosphere warmer than normal.

On top of that, researchers were investigating "alarming" reports in the last few days of the release of methane from long frozen Arctic waters, possibly from the warming of the sea, said Greenpeace climate scientist Bill Hare, who was attending a climate conference in Ghana. Giant burps of methane, which is a potent greenhouse gas, is a long feared effect of warming in the Arctic that would accelerate warming even more, according to scientists. 

Overall, the picture of what's happening in the Arctic is getting worse, said Bob Corell, who headed a multinational scientific assessment of Arctic conditions a few years ago: "We're moving beyond a point of no return." 


Wednesday, August 20, 2008

Magnetic Declination

Magnetic declination is the difference between true north (the axis around which the earth rotates) and magnetic north (the direction the needle of a compass will point). It is usually printed on the map to the left of the scale bar at the bottom of a USGS 7.5' quadrangle. After finding the declination on the map, you need to transfer the information to your compass before you ever take it into the field. If you fail to do this, any readings you get from your compass will be in error and you may wind up far from where you want to be (in other words, LOST ! ! !).

Magnetic north is determined by the earth's magnetic field and is not the same as true (or geographic) north. The location of the magnetic north pole changes slowly over time, but it is currently northwest of Hudson's Bay in northern Canada (approximately 700 km [450 mi] from the true north pole). Maps are based on the geographic north pole because it does not change over time, so north is always at the top of a quadrangle map.

However, if you were to walk a straight line following the direction your compass needle indicated as north, you would find that you didn’t go from south to north on the map. Howfar your path varied from true north would depend on where you started from. The angle between a straight north-south line and the line you walked is the magnetic declination in the area you were walking. In the example figure, if you walked 1.25 miles toward magnetic north(i.e. you followed your compass without adjusting for magnetic declination) you would end up 1/3 of a mile away from where you would be if you walked 1.25 miles toward true north.

Fortunately, magnetic declination has been measured throughout the U.S. and can be corrected for on your compass (see below). This map shows lines of equal magnetic declination throughout the U.S. and Canada.
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Friday, August 15, 2008

Congratulations India

With all the inherent contradictions and weaknesses we Indians have an intense desire to succeed,to march ahead and to excel. This is our secret of suceess.Happy Independence Day to fellow Indians.

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

Nigeria to Use Spacetech to Fight Flood Disaster

Nigeria - The Federal Ministry of Science and Technology is to avail relevant agencies with space-based technology to address environmental problems.The Minister of Science and Technology, Chief Mrs. Grace Ekpiwhre stated this in her speech at a Workshop on Flood Early Warning systems organised in Abuja on Tuesday.

Mrs. Ekpiwhre said agencies of her ministry like the National Space Research and Development Agency (NASRDA) and the Centre For Remote Sensing, would be willing to work with the Federal Ministry of Environment and Urban Development, the National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA), and other agencies to develop early warning and monitoring systems for sustainable environmental development in Nigeria.

According to her, space-based technology such as Remote Sensing, Geographic Information System and Global Positioning System are very reliable as they provide faster, cheaper, accurate and reliable data for addressing flood and other environmental disasters. Mrs Ekpiwhere said NASRDA and the National Centre for Remote Sensing had just produced settlement Map of Nigeria, and a Digital Elevation Model and they are currently working to produce a National land use/land cover mapping at the scale of I: 100000 using NigeriaSat – I.

While canvassing closer collaboration with her – Ministry with that of Environment, Mrs Ekpiwhre added that satellite images provides synoptic data of an area either in real-time or near real-time at different spatial and/or temporal resolutions.

She further said that the Geographic Information System provides the enabling environment for combining remote sensing date, Digital Elevation Models, hydrological data and other spatial and attribute datasets to delineates flood affected areas under different magnitudes of floods or flood scenarios.

She concluded that the development of flood Early Warning systems for Nigeria was not only timely but necessary in achieving the 7 – Point Agenda, adding that the Ministry's Space Agency would provide all satellite images while the centre for Remote Sensing based in Jos was well-positioned to facilitate the implementation of Flood Early Warning System. 

Source :

ISRO postpones Chandrayaan I until mid-October

India - The launch of India's first unmanned mission to the Moon has been postponed until the middle of October, the head of the Indian space program has said. 

The launch of the Chandrayaan I lunar orbiter by the Indian Space Research Organization (ISRO) was originally planned for September 19 but scientists have yet to conduct the thermo-vacuum testing of a Polar Satellite Launch Vehicle (PSLV) with the orbiter on board.

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Monday, August 11, 2008

Urgent Requirement

Empower consultancy, a chennai based leading provider of geospatial 
databases,customize d map products and solutions for wireless 
telecommunications industry worldwide, has openings for the below 
mentioned positions.

1. Team Leaders

The candidate should be M.Tech / in Remote Sensing &
Geoinformatics having 2 to 3 years of experience in image processing,
Geo-spatial data analysis. The candidate should be technically strong
in ERDAS, Arc GIS, MapInfo,ArcInfo, Auto desk map 3D 2006.

2. Application Engineers

The candidate should be M.Tech / in Remote Sensing &
Geoinformatics having 1 year of experience in image processing,
Geo-spatial data analysis. The candidate should be technically strong
in ERDAS, Arc GIS, MapInfo,ArcInfo, Auto desk map 3D 2006.

3. Trainees

The candidate should be M.Tech / in Remote Sensing &
Geoinformatics passed out in 2008. The candidate should have the 
basic knowledge of ERDAS, Arc GIS, MapInfo,ArcInfo, Auto desk map 3D 

Interested candidates can forward their Resumes to the below
mentioned E-mail.



India's Abhinav Bindra won a gold in men's 10-metre Air Rifle event in Beijing. Bindra shot 104.5 to take his total to 700.5 in the final. This is India's first ever Olympic gold in any individual event and ninth in total.

In ten rounds, Bindra shot 10.7, 10.3, 10.4, 10.5, 10.5, 10.5, 10.6, 10.0, 10.2, 10.8 to clinch the first berth. China's Qinan Zhu won silver while Finland's Henri Hakkinen won bronze.

Bindra had shot a total of 596 out of 600, shooting a perfect 100 in 3 of the 6 rounds of the qualifiers. Bindra finished 4th to qualify 2 points behind Henri Hakkinen of Finland. 

Gagan Narang, meanwhile, was very unlucky missing out by just 1 point on a countback after he was tied with 4 others after 6 rounds with an average score of 9.917 in the qualifiers. In a countback, since all five shooters, who were tied, had shot a perfect 100 in the last round, the 5th round scores were taken into account, where Narang had managed a 98, whereas the others had shot either a 99 or a 100. 

If Narang had shot a 99 instead of a 98, 4th round scores would have been taken into account and Narang would have gone through.


Saturday, August 9, 2008

Needed:GIS System Projects Manager

Job Location(s):
United Kingdom

GIS Works Management Systems & Project Manager; ESRI, Ellipse, Works Management Systems and Prince 2 Projects Manager. This role requires the successful candidate to manage the Department that manages the below ground assets (GIS) systems and the above ground asset systems (AMIS). 

They will be required to carry out various tasks including: 

The Below and Above Ground Asset systems (GIS and AMIS) are being developed in line with the business need. 

The GIS and AMIS opex and capex budget targets are achieved without compromising levels of service, or the scope of services delivered. 

The GIS and AMIS systems run across the Group without interruption. 

All managers and staff in the team are set clear aims and objectives with a high level of motivation 

Development Plans, User Groups and Steering Groups are in place for both GIS and AMIS applications. 

Projects are completed on time and within budget using, where appropriate, a defined methodology 

Internal customers have all received the suitable level of training and coaching for relevant systems 

Application service level targets are met for both GIS and AMIS. 

Project manage system implementations. In depth knowledge of both spatial data and asset data 

Make recommendations on future Asset System developments. Authorise third party to undertake software development and support. 

Monitoring the cross functional business processes and resources to meet priorities and SLA's 

Controlling the Section's physical, financial and human resources. Exercising judgement when dealing with customers, contractors and suppliers and technical problems.
Additional Information
Salary: from £40,000.00 up to £45,000.00 per year
Position Type: Full Time, Employee
Great Training
Application Centre Ltd
Paul Corcoran
13 Lawn Close
Torquay, TQ2 8JZ
Devon, United Kingdom
Phone Number: 01803 320033
Mobile Number: 07947 200 000

Wednesday, August 6, 2008

Oil holds above $119

Oil prices were steady above $119 a barrel Wednesday as investors awaited weekly oil and gasoline inventory data for further evidence of declining crude demand in the U.S.  

By midday in Europe, light, sweet crude for September delivery was up 36 cents to $119.53 a barrel in electronic trading on the New York Mercantile Exchange. The contract dropped $2.24 overnight to settle at $119.17 a barrel.

In London, September Brent crude rose 66 cents to $118.36 a barrel on the ICE Futures exchange.

Oil will probably drop further unless the U.S. Energy Department's Energy Information Administration says in its weekly oil inventory report that gasoline stocks fell significantly, said Tetsu Emori, who manages a commodity markets fund at ASTMAX Futures Co. in Tokyo.

"If we don't get a strong number, oil prices will likely fall further," he said.

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Monday, August 4, 2008

Iran tests 'new weapon' for use at sea

TEHRAN, Iran - Iran announced Monday that it has tested a new weapon capable of sinking ships nearly 200 miles away, and reiterated threats to close a strategic waterway at the mouth of the Persian Gulf if attacked.  

Up to 40 percent of the world's oil passes through the Strait of Hormuz, a narrow passage along Iran's southern coast. Tehran has warned it could shut down tanker traffic there if attacked — a move likely to send oil prices skyrocketing.

The warnings came two days after a deadline expired for Iran to respond to incentives from six world powers, offered in exchange for a promise to curb its uranium enrichment.

Later Monday, the U.S. State Department said the group — the five permanent members of the U.N. Security Council, plus Germany — agreed to pursue further sanctions against Iran because of its failure to meet the Saturday deadline.

Iran and the West have been mired in a standoff over the country's disputed nuclear program. The United Nations has already slapped Iran with three rounds of sanctions, over its refusal to stop enriching uranium — a key process that generates either fuel for a nuclear reactor, or the fissile material for a bomb.

Iran says its nuclear program is for peaceful purposes only, to generate electricity.

Revolutionary Guards commander Gen. Mohammad Ali Jafari said Monday that the new marine weapon is "unique in the world" and has a range of 300 kilometers (186 miles), according to the state news agency IRNA.

That's within range of U.S. warships deployed in the Persian Gulf. Last month, Iran tested missiles it claimed were capable of reaching 1,250 miles (2,000 kilometers) away — putting U.S military bases in the Middle East as well as Israel, Turkey, the Arabian peninsula, Afghanistan and Pakistan all within striking distance.

Monday's report gave no details on when or where the new weapon was tested. Its range indicates it could be a type of torpedo, but state radio called it a missile.

Jafari warned Iran would respond decisively if any military strike is carried out against it.

"Enemies know that we are easily able to block the Strait of Hormuz for an unlimited period," he was quoted by state radio as saying. "The strait and vessels are in range of our various weapons."

Both the U.S. and Israel — which shares American concerns over Iran's nuclear program — have said they would prefer a diplomatic solution to the standoff with Iran, but have not ruled out other options — including a military one.

Israeli analyst Ephraim Kam, a former senior intelligence officer, dismissed the new weapons test.

"They are always boasting about their weapons and their military capabilities and saying how unique they are, but they are usually just standard military weapons," he said.

Tropical storm forms in oil area of Gulf of Mexico

The fifth tropical storm of the 2008 Atlantic hurricane season formed near a major oil and gas producing area of the northern Gulf of Mexico on Sunday, the U.S. National Hurricane Center said.

Tropical Storm Edouard, located around 80 miles southeast of the mouth of the Mississippi River by 11 p.m. EDT, was expected to come ashore at close to hurricane strength in a few days on the Texas coast, the Miami-based hurricane center said.

One of the computer models used to predict storm paths and intensities indicated Edouard could become a hurricane, with winds in excess of 74 miles per hour (119 km per hour), the hurricane center said. But its official forecast called for Edouard to top out at 69 mph (111 kph).

The center issued a hurricane watch, meaning hurricane conditions are possible within 36 hours, for the coastline west of Intracoastal City, Louisiana, to Port O'Connor, Texas.

A tropical storm warning, meaning tropical storm conditions could be expected within 24 hours, was extended westward from the Mississippi River to Cameron, Louisiana.

Thursday, July 31, 2008

Scraping The Bottom Of The Oil Barrel A Significant New Climate Risk

Exploitation of North America’s shale and tar-sand oil reserves could increase atmospheric CO2 levels by up to 15%, a new report from WWF-UK and the major UK financial group Co-Operative Financial Services (CFS) has warned.

Extraction of the projected 1,115 billion barrels of recoverable oil from unconventional fuel sources such as Alberta’s oil sands and Colorado’s oil shale, which involve much more energy intensive procedures for extraction than traditional oil reserves, would significantly increase global risks of dangerous climate change, the report said.

Unconventional Oil: Scraping the bottom of the barrel reported that companies including Shell, ExxonMobil and BP have announced over $CAN 125 billion worth of development in Canada’s oil sands by 2015. Increasing oil prices are also increasing interest in unconventional oil sources has been given added impetus by rising oil prices.

“The extraordinary lengths some oil and gas companies go to in attempting to make the climate-hostile fuels somewhat less so should be re-directed to bringing forward low-carbon energy,” said Ian Jones, head of Responsible Investment at Co-Operative Investments, part of the CFS group.


Polar Ice Check - Still a lot of ice up there

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Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Urban Mapping Surpasses 50,000 Neighborhoods

USA - Urban Mapping, Inc., the leading provider of location-rich content for interactive applications, today announced it has surpassed the 50,000 mark for United States neighborhood boundary collection. This announcement marks another milestone in Urban Mapping's compilation of neighborhood boundary data represented in more than 2,400 U.S. cities and towns and is coupled with the growth of the company's collection of international boundary data corresponding to 20,000 neighborhoods across Canada and many European countries. Local search, mapping, GIS, location-based services, real estate, social networks and other interactive applications can tap Urban Mapping's neighborhood boundary data through the company's Urbanware: Neighborhoods(TM) database product. 

"When it comes to local, neighborhoods, not ZIP codes, matter -- the postal code was created for two express purposes: deliver mail and settle labor squabbles. Interactive publishers across many verticals -- real estate, automotive, travel, classified and others now recognize the inherent limitations of the ZIP," said Ian White, Urban Mapping CEO. "Our database of neighborhood boundary data is designed to empower these interactive applications with the ability to offer users more precise, location-relevant information. For example, if a person wants to search the Internet for a coffee shop in New York's SoHo neighborhood, she can visit a website or other interactive application that is powered by Urban Mapping's neighborhood boundary database. The end result for the user is a geo-relevant search result or map with a listing of actual coffee shops in SoHo." 

Urban Mapping's neighborhood boundary database is the most comprehensive database of its kind, enabling increased relevance for users and greater precision for advertisers. Urban Mapping accounts for the inherent 'fuzziness' in defining neighborhood boundaries by using a patent-pending data model. By geographically encoding boundaries of thousands of neighborhoods, UMI provides precise latitude and longitude points for every neighborhood. 

Source :

Surveyors Needed

 Looking for surveyors who are experienced, skilled and knowledgeable to handle maps. The job is for Ahmedabad City, initially. nature of the job is to collect the primary data from street such as Road Name, House no, Area, Sub locality, Locality Pin code Turn restriction and the POI ( point of intersect) data collection,

Please contact 

Ashish Upadhyay
Ph: 09974238837
Email: ashishbu@yahoo. com


A caravanserai (Persian: كاروانسرا kārvānsarā, Turkish kervansaray) was a roadside inn where travelers could rest and recover from the day's journey. Caravanserais supported the flow of commerce, information, and people across the network of trade routes covering Asia, North Africa, and South-Eastern Europe.

Most typically it was a building with a square or rectangular walled exterior, with a single portal wide enough to permit large or heavily laden beasts such as camels to enter. The courtyard was almost always open to the sky, and the inside walls of the enclosure were outfitted with a number of identical stalls, bays, niches, or chambers to accommodate merchants and their servants, animals, and merchandise. Caravanserais provided water for human and animal consumption, washing, and ritual ablutions. Sometimes they even had elaborate baths. They also kept fodder for animals and had shops for travellers where they could acquire new supplies. In addition, there could be shops where merchants could dispose of some of their goods.

The word is also rendered as caravansarai or caravansary. The Persian word kārvānsarā is a compound word combining ''kārvānsarā (caravan) with sara (palace, building with enclosed courts), to which the Persian suffix -yi is added. Here "caravan" means a group of traders, pilgrims, or other travelers, engaged in long distance travel.

The caravanserai was also known as a khan (Persian خان) or han (Turkish).


Tuesday, July 29, 2008

IIT Kanpur proposes micro satellite to ISRO

India - IIT Kanpur has submitted a proposal to the Indian Space Research Organisation, relating to design and development of a micro satellite. 

The micro satellite, weighing around seven kg, can be used as part of disaster management and in cartography, Director IIT Kanpur S G Dhande, said on the sidelines of a conference on Smart materials, structures and systems. 

The project was expected to require a funding of around Rs five to seven crore, he said, adding the proposal on the subject has been submitted to ISRO. 

Highlighting other applications of micro and smart systems, he said currently a railway project was on to test the application of micro and smart system to track down the location of a train en route to its destination. 

The system fitted over the train engine could send data which could be displayed on a screen locating the train's current position on the route. 

The screen could be displayed in coaches for passengers to be updated on their travel. 
The device could also help the driver get information on all the trains travelling on that route, he said. 

Speaking during the inauguration of the conference, G Madhavan Nair, Chairman, Isro said that smart materials and technology held huge potential in terms of application. 

Citing an example, he said use of smart systems in cars could help a driver gain information on the proximity of other vehicles and automatically apply brakes. 

Source :

ISRO to launch Chandrayaan-I in September

Indian Space Research Organization (ISRO) will launch Chandrayaan-I, India’’s maiden mission to the moon, in September.

Talking to ANI in an exclusive interview on the sidelights of a seminar here today, Chairman of ISRO G. Madhavan Nair said that the final tests have been on to launch the spacecraft to moon.

Chandrayaan-I will be launched atop a Polar Satellite Launch Vehicle (PSLV), India’’s workhorse rocket with a streak of nine consecutive flawless missions.

The spacecraft would be loaded with six instruments including a high-resolution stereo camera capable of imaging objects about 16 feet in diameter.

It will also carry near-infrared and X-ray spectrometers and a laser altimeter to determine the altitude of the lunar craft for spatial coverage of various instruments.

These payloads will enable researchers to ascertain the composition and topography of the lunar surface.

The engineers have also built a 64-pound impactor that will be dropped from the orbiting spacecraft for a suicidal nosedive into the moon.

The probe will relay video imagery, altitude information and spectral data back to Earth through the Chandrayaan mothership, which will be in a lunar orbit 100 kilometres away.

The remote sensing satellite will weigh 1304 kg (590 kg initial orbit mass and 504 kg dry mass). 

Source :

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

Researcher says Gulf dead zone bigger than ever

HOUSTON - A "dead zone" in the Gulf of Mexico off the Texas-Louisiana coast this year is likely to be the biggest ever and last longer than ever before, with marine life affected for hundreds of miles, a scientist warned.
"It's definitely the worst we've seen in the last five years," said Steve DiMarco, a Texas A&M University professor of oceanography who for 16 years has studied the Gulf of Mexico dead zone, so named because the oxygen-depleted water can kill marine life.
The phenomenon is caused when salt water loses large amounts of oxygen, a condition known as hypoxia that is typically associated with an area off the Louisiana coast at the mouth of the Mississippi River. The fresh water and salt water don't mix well, keeping oxygen from filtering through to the sea bottom, which causes problems for fish, shrimp, crabs and clams.
This year's dead zone has been aggravated by flood runoff from heavy spring rains and additional runoff moving into the Gulf from record floods along the Mississippi.
DiMarco, joined by researchers from Texas A&M and the University of Georgia, just returned from an examination of 74 sites between Terrebonne and Cameron, La. He said the most severe hypoxia levels were recorded in the mid-range depths, between 20 and 30 feet, as well as near the bottom of the sea floor at about 60 feet.
Some of the worst hypoxic levels occurred in the western Gulf toward the state line.
"We saw quite a few areas that had little or no oxygen at all at that site," DiMarco said Tuesday. "This dead zone area is the strongest we've seen since 2004, and it's very likely the worst may be still to come.
"Since most of the water from the Midwest is still making its way down to the Gulf, we believe that wide area of hypoxia will persist through August and likely until September, when it normally ends."
Last year, DiMarco discovered a similar dead zone off the Texas coast where the rain-swollen Brazos River emptied into the Gulf.
The zone off Louisiana reached a record 7,900 square miles in 2002. A recent estimate from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration and Louisiana State University shows the zone, which has been monitored for about 25 years, could exceed 8,800 square miles this year, an area roughly the size of New Jersey.
DiMarco said a tropical storm or hurricane likely would have no impact on this year's zone, believed to be caused by nutrient pollution from fertilizers that empty into rivers and eventually reach the Gulf.

Wireless tracking system for fishing vessels

Amid protests by Tamil Nadu fishermen complaining of harassment from Sri Lankan Navy in Palk Straits, the state government has okayed plans to fit wireless tracking systems to fishing vessels to enable authorities to respond to distress calls. 

Said to be the first of its kind in India, the radio network will be fitted on shipping vessels in Ramanathapuram district as a pilot project, costing Rs 7.7 crore. The sanction came in the midst of agitation by the fishermen in the district protesting against recent detention of 1,000 Indian fishermen by Sri Lankan Navy.

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Coral Reefs in the Danger of Extinction



An estuary is a semi-enclosed coastal body of water with one or more rivers or streams flowing into it, and with a free connection to the open sea.Estuaries are often associated with high rates of biological productivity.
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Remains of vast Neolithic site found in south China

 Thousands of ancient artifacts and wooden poles more than 3,000 years old have been unearthed in China's southern Yunnan province, possibly the world's largest site of a Neolithic community, local media reported on Tuesday.  
The poles, found standing 4.6 meters underground, were used as part of building structures for an ancient community that may have covered an area of 4 square km, the China Daily reported, citing Min Rui, a researcher at Yunnan Archaeological Institute, who is leading the excavation team.

The site could be older than the Hemudu community in Yuyao, in Zhejiang province, which is among the most famous in China and is believed to be the birthplace of society around the Yangtze River.

An area of 1,350 sq m has already been uncovered and excavation is ongoing.

"I was shocked when I first saw the site. I have never seen such a big and orderly one," Yan Wenming, history professor at Peking University, was quoted as saying.

Excavation began in January, but the site was actually discovered five decades ago during the construction of a canal along the banks of the Jianhu Lake, about 500 km northwest of the provincial capital Kunming.

Archaeologists have found more than 3,000 artifacts made of stone, wood, iron, pottery and bone, as well as more than 2,000 of the wooden posts.

Monday, July 21, 2008

UN-HABITAT and Lebanese Army in GIS cooperation

Beirut - UN-HABITAT and the Lebanese Army have concluded a cooperation framework to promote and further develop nationwide Geographical Information Systems (GIS) using satellite photographs from space. 

‘In light of the common areas of interest of making available accurate and up-to-date geographic data and turning them into sound human settlements plans, UN-HABITAT and the Directorate of Geographic Affairs (DGA) – Lebanese Army concluded a cooperation framework to promote and further develop the nationwide GIS and mapping tools available within the DGA,’ a joint statement said. 

According to the statement, the DGA is providing the necessary support to UN-HABITAT recovery project in Southern Lebanon with the aim of establishing three Local Urban Observatories in towns of Tyre, Bint Jbeil and Jabal Amel. 

Under this cooperation framework, UN-HABITAT co-sponsored the DGA Fourth Arab Conference for Geographic Names held in Beirut on June 22 – 27, 2008. UN-HABITAT took part in the parallel exhibition event where publications and documents were displayed and distributed to more than 100 attendants 

The agency is undertaking a series of recovery projects in Lebanon to respond to the massive destruction caused by the July 2006 war. The ‘Good Governance for Post-War Reconstruction’ project is a comprehensive program co-funded by the Dutch, Cyprus and Finnish governments with a total budget amounting to EUR 1.8 million. 

Its main goal is to strengthen the capacities of local authorities, the union of municipalities and community representatives to plan, guide, monitor and control the overall reconstruction process of the 21 towns and villages hit in the raids. 

Source :

European industry feels the heat of high oil prices

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Sunday, July 20, 2008

Satellite Imagery Shows Arctic Ice Still Unmelted

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Biosphere Reserves

According to “The Statutory Framework of the World Network of Biosphere Reserves,” biosphere reserves are created “to promote and demonstrate a balanced relationship between humans and the biosphere.” Under article 4, biosphere reserves must “encompass a mosaic of ecological systems,” and thus consist of combinations of terrestrial, coastal, or marine ecosystems.

Friday, July 18, 2008

Ibn Khaldūn

Ibn Khaldūn or Ibn Khaldoun (full name, Arabic: أبو زيد عبد الرحمن بن محمد بن خلدون ‎, Abū Zayd ‘Abdu r-Raḥman bin Muḥammad bin Khaldūn, Amazigh: Ibn Xldun) (May 27, 1332 AD/732 AH – March 19, 1406 AD/808 AH), was a famous historian, scholar, theologian, and statesman born in North Africa in present-day Tunisia.He is best known for his Muqaddimah (known as Prolegomenon in Greek), the first volume of his book o universal history, Kitab al-Ibar.. He is one of those shining stars that contributed so richly to the understanding of Civilization. In order for one to understand and appreciate his work, one must understand his life. He lived a life in search of stability and influence. He came from a family of scholars and politicians and he intended to live up to both expectations. He would succeed in the field of Scholarship much more so than in any other field.

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Green cover study being undertaken in Karachi

Mayor Mustafa Kamal has been plugging development in Karachi as if cement was going out of style. And indeed, if any of the hesitant investors from Washington to Korea gingerly took a tour of the city, they would see that Kamal has been to task with whatever resources he has. The result: bumpy flyovers and underpasses, whose sheer ugliness is forgivable if only for their traffic-jam reducing utility. The behemoth structures, despite being new, look as old as post-boom Detroit or pre-Capitalism Moscow. These roads in the sky appear seemingly out of nowhere and squat over housing colonies that miraculously manage to shrink and expand at the same time...

Air Traffic Control Approves 4cm Resolution Aerial Survey of London

The GeoInformation® Group, publishers of Cities Revealed aerial photography (, announces that it has received approval to survey the whole of London at the highest resolution ever captured. The level of detail is unparalleled, aerial imagery captured at 4cm is of an exceptional quality, and provides a highly detailed view of the world with road markings and street furniture clearly visible. 

Since the events of 9/11 and 7/7 increased national security has meant that it has been difficult for aerial survey suppliers to gain approval on aerial survey flights below 4000 metres. The GeoInformation Group has been granted approval to fly London at an altitude of 1500 metres; the lowest altitude an aerial survey has been flown over the capital. The aerial survey will utilise a twin turbo prop airplane fitted with the latest digital camera technology, which will fly slow enough to achieve image overlaps for stereo viewing. 

Alun Jones, Managing Director commented, “We are extremely excited, and proud, to be the first aerial imagery supplier to be granted such highly sought after Air Traffic Control approval and also to produce the highest resolution aerial photography of the capital ever. The Geoinformation Group has always been a groundbreaking pioneer within the GI industry. 4cm resolution aerial photography is setting a new standard.” 

By capturing London at 4cm The GeoInformation Group will be ensuring that every public and commercial agency responsible for the continued development of London has access to the most detailed and clearest aerial imagery available. 

Source :

Thursday, July 17, 2008

Myanmar’s Cyclone-Damaged Rice Production Regions Monitored with GIS

Subsequent to Cyclone Nargis, a category 3 tropical storm that struck the low-lying and heavily populated coastline of Myanmar on May 2, 2008, the Foreign Agriculture Service (FAS) of the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) began producing a series of geographic information system (GIS)-based maps of the damaged agricultural areas to accompany its commodity intelligence reports. Published on the FAS Web site, these maps are created using geospatial data and the technology found in ESRI’s ArcGIS Desktop software. 

The mission of FAS is to improve foreign market access to U.S. agricultural products, build new markets, improve the competitive position of U.S. agriculture in the global marketplace, and provide food aid and technical assistance to foreign countries. FAS achieves a part of this mission by analyzing global crop production capacity with remote-sensing and GIS tools and by issuing commodity intelligence reports highlighting current international crop conditions. GIS-based maps, available in PDF format, provide a visualization of the analysis performed and often serve as each report’s basis. The commodity intelligence reports issued for the country formerly known as Burma focus on Myanmar’s major rice-producing areas, which have suffered saltwater flooding and heavy rainfall as a result of the cyclone. 

The project included satellite imagery obtained from the National Aeronautics and Space Administration’s (NASA) moderate-resolution imaging spectroradiometer (MODIS) satellite to delineate the postcyclone flooding region. This imagery was combined with rice land-cover classification data from the Landsat satellite program. FAS used ArcGIS to perform spatial analysis and create maps of the damaged rice production regions of Myanmar. These maps revealed the cyclone’s effect on cropland and livestock, the severity of flooding, and the rate of cropland recovery. The United Nations and nongovernmental organizations (NGO) are using the maps to evaluate the scope of the cyclone’s impact. The information is also been of great interest to the international agriculture industry for determining market impacts. 

“Our GIS maps and flood classification data show that the areas originally inundated by the storm account for approximately 1.7 million hectares of rice, 24 percent of the national rice area, or roughly 2.5 million tons of rice production on a milled basis,” says FAS international crop assessment analyst Michael Shean. “The core region most severely damaged by the tidal wave and high winds, however, accounted for approximately 900,000 hectares of rice land, 13 percent of the national rice area, and roughly 1.35 million tons of milled rice production. In addition, field reports from inside the affected region indicate that within these rice production areas, large numbers of villages were destroyed along with much of their food stocks, livestock, and farming supplies.”

A commodity intelligence report and maps issued June 10, 2008, demonstrate that approximately 80 percent of the original inundated rice production area is still affected by some degree of flooding, though conditions in the core damage zone had improved considerably, with only 418,000 hectares, or 46 percent of the original area, still showing flood effects. FAS will continue to produce reports and maps and perform analysis of Myanmar’s rice production regions as new data becomes available. 

As a complete GIS, ArcGIS allows organizations such as USDA to author data, maps, 
globes, and models on the desktop; serve them to a GIS server; and use them through Web, desktop, and mobile clients. The ArcGIS family of products includes desktop, server, mobile, and online GIS as well as ESRI data. 

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Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Global satellite maps to reveal ocean areas where winds could produce wind energy

 Scientists have created maps using nearly a decade of data from NASA's QuikSCAT satellite, which reveal ocean areas where winds could produce wind energy.The new maps have
many potential uses including planning the location of offshore wind farms to convert wind energy into electric energy.
"Wind energy is environmentally friendly. After the initial energy investment to build and install wind turbines, you don't burn fossil fuels that emit carbon," said study lead author Tim Liu, a senior research scientist and QuikSCAT science team leader at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, California."Like solar power, wind energy is green energy," he added.

QuikSCAT, launched in 1999, tracks the speed, direction and power of winds near the ocean surface. Data from QuikSCAT, collected continuously by a specialized microwave radar instrument named SeaWinds, also are used to predict storms and enhance the accuracy of weather forecasts.Wind energy has the potential to provide 10 to 15 percent of future world energy requirements, according to Paul Dimotakis, chief technologist at JPL.

If ocean areas with high winds were tapped for wind energy, they could potentially generate 500 to 800 watts of energy per square meter, according to Liu's research. Dimotakis noted that while this is slightly less than solar energy (which generates about one kilowatt of energy per square meter), wind power can be converted to electricity more efficiently than solar energy and at a lower cost per watt of electricity produced.
According to Liu, new technology has made floating wind farms in the open ocean possible. A number of wind farms are already in operation worldwide. Ocean wind farms have less environmental impact than onshore wind farms, whose noise tends to disturb sensitive wildlife in their immediate area. Also, winds are generally stronger over the ocean than on land because there is less friction over water to slow the winds down. There are no hills or mountains to block the wind's path.

Ideally, offshore wind farms should be located in areas where winds blow continuously at high speeds. The new research identifies such areas and offers explanations for the physical mechanisms that produce the high winds.

The new QuikSCAT maps, which add to previous generations of QuikSCAT wind atlases, also will be beneficial to the shipping industry by highlighting areas of the ocean where high winds could be hazardous to ships, allowing them to steer clear of these areas.

Scientists use the QuikSCAT data to examine how ocean winds affect weather and climate, by driving ocean currents, mixing ocean waters, and affecting the carbon, heat and water interaction between the ocean and the atmosphere.

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Mohd. Shafi

Born: 1st August 1924, Jaunpur (UP) India.
Died: 9th December, 2007, Aligarh (UP) India. 
Father: Husain Ali
Children: Prof. Mohd. Jamil (Civil Engg., AMU Aligarh), Dr. Bilquees Bano

Education: 1945: B.A. Allahabad University
1947: M.A. (Geography), AMU Aligarh
1956: Ph.D. from London School of Economics with Prof. Dudley Stamp

Career: 1948: Lecturer, Department of Geography, AMU Aligarh
1956: Reader, Department of Geography, AMU Aligarh
1962: Professor, Department of Geography, AMU Aligarh
1962-84: Chairman, Department of Geography, AMU Aligarh
1966-68: Dean, Faculty of Science
1959-62: Provost, Sir Shah Sulaiman Hall
1984: Professor Emeritus in Dept. of Geography AMU Aligarh
1972-74: Director Academic Program (DAP)
1979-80: Pro-Vice Chancellor of Aligarh Muslim University

1985-1993: Vice-President, International Geographical Union

1987: Member, Royal geographical Society of London.
1992-95: Pro-Chancellor of Aligarh Muslim University

2001: Padama Shri by the Government of India
2001: Bhoogol Ratna Award by Bhoovigyan Vikas Foundation, New Delhi.
2002: "Saraswati Award" in Environmental Science and Ecology by the UGC

Member: The Scientific Committee of the International Social Science Council

“Laureate d’ honneur” by the International Geographical union at Glasgow,
UK. 'Academician' by the Russian Academy of Sciences.

Member : Bureau for Promotion of Urdu

President : Indian Geographical Union, Indian Geographical Council.

Mohd. Shafi was born on 1st June, 1924 in historical city of Jaunpur in eastern Uttar Pardesh. In 1945, after completing his graduation from Allahabad University, he joined Aligarh Muslim University in M.A. in Geography. 

Association with Aligarh :
Mohd. Shafi completed his M.A. in Geography in 1947. Like other part of the country, Aligarh Muslim University campus was also not safe from the socio-political activities of Indian Freedom movement during this time. But this did not affect the studies of young Mohd. Shafi. After completing his M.A., he joined AMU as lecturer in department of Geography. He completed his Ph.D. from London University in 1956 and was appointed as Reader in Geography department of AMU. His Ph.D. work was well recognized at International level. His research area Agricultural Geography got attention in the research community an department of Geography of AMU Aligarh was declared a center of excellence for the subject buy University Grant Commission and Mohd. Shafi was appointed its Coordinator. His research work on the Food System of India has been recognized with high honors in many countries, and by the United Nations.In 1962, he was appointed as Professor in the same department. In the same year he became Chairman, Department of Geography and served on this position till 1984. He has published 11 books and 130 research papers, and has supervised 34 doctoral works. He also served as Provost for 3 years and Dean Faculty of Science. In 1972, Prof. Abdul Aleem, Vice-Chancellor of AMU Aligarh appointed him as Director of Academic Program (DAP). He served as DAP till 1974. His academic excellence and administrative abilities were noticed by AMU Vice Chancellor Prof. Ali Mohammad Khusro and in 1979 he appointed him as Pro-Vice Chancellor of Aligarh Muslim University. He served as Pro Vice-Chancellor for two years. In 1984, he retired from his services but Department of Geography appointed him as Professor Emeritus.

Professor Shafi is the first Indian Geographer in the Indian sub-continent including SAARC countries to receive this prestigious award at the 30th International Geographical Congress held at Glasgow in U.K. More than 1800 geographers from 81 countries participated in the Congress. The Russian Academy of Sciences also conferred on him its highest award 'Academician'. The Royal Geographers Society, London made him its Honorary Corresponding Member of the Council and the American Geographic Society offered him its Fellowship. In 2002 he has been honored for "Saraswati Award" in Environmental Science and Ecology by the University Grants Commission. On April 22, 2001 at New Delhi Bhoovigyan Vikas Foundation awarded him the maiden Bhoogol Ratna Award, which consists of Rs One lakh and a citation.

In AMU Court meeting on July 5th, 1992, Professor Mohd Shafi was elected as Pro-Chancellor of Aligarh Muslim University for a period of 3 years.

On 9th December 2007, Professor Mohd Shafi died in Aligarh. He was laid to rest in University Graveyard 'Mintoyee'.