Although the space race hasn’t been a two horse race in a long time, India certainly jumped a head this week with this bit of news – India launches first moon mission! The Chandrayaan-1 was successfully launched yesterday on a survey course of the moon. The mission is unmaned with the goal of developing a 3D model of the lunar surface. In fact, the whole mission is to develop a 3D atlas of the moon to help look for mineral resources that can be potentially mined and used in fusion reactors back on Earth. There’s a video at the bottom of the link showing the launch, which is fun to watch.
The ASPRS has released the Draft Guidelines for the Procurement of Professional Services for comment. The draft document seeks to replace guidelines published in 1987 by the ASPRS. With input from MAPPS, ACSM, federal and state employee members of ASPRS, and the ASPRS Professional Practices division the document will hopefully be representative of all of those in the industry that utilize remote sensed data. The document should provide those who seek to find the best method to choose vendors a hand in the process. The document is short and focused and includes sections that define the profession, outline relevant licensure issues, and provide various procurement methods.
The document and an overview PowerPoint can be accessed on the ASPRS Procurement Guidelines Committee website
ITT, the company that created the ‘earth imaging payload’ on the recent GeoEye-1 satellite, has posted a sample image from the satellite. While the image isn’t raw, it is still impressive. It is a fusion image created from blending the 0.41m panchromatic image and the 1.65m color image. I remember fusion from just a decade ago that blended IRS with LandSat that I though was great, but this clearly pushes us to the point where satellite is truly competing with aerial imagery…and more importantly can you imagine the size of datasets created when you classify them
GeoEye is going to stream the launch of their GeoEye-1 satellite Saturday afternoon (today) at noon PDT on their website. Always fun to watch a launch and probably interesting for the kids as well. Since we will be finished recording before launch we will talk about it in next weeks news I guess.
UPDATE: All seems to have gone well on the launch (which you can watch from their video archive) and GeoEye is looking forward to the next phase which will be the calibrating and ‘check out’ period
Unfortunately, I signed on to the Imagine 9.3 session late and missed most of the things I wanted to see (Web Services and vector rendering details) but while I was in the session they talked about some of the compression updates and RADAR tools using slides then offered a live demo of some of the content I had missed. The points I walked away with were:
1) there will be a new module in conjunction with TerraGo named Imagine Map2GeoPDF and they showed an example of using it to export a single map composer image and a batch using the Map Series tool (nice, very nice)
2) vectors are drawing (especially redrawing) faster, at least points and lines, but there was an off hand remark about polygons drawing a little slower without an explanation
3) there was an interesting demo of contrast tools. I am not sure if the are new or not in 9.3, but they are new to me
4) as I was dialing up the audio via skype (which was being cranky as usual) I saw a bullet point on a new license manager, but I missed the details
Other interesting bits include ERDAS falling in line with other companies and moving to quarterly service packs and incorporating enhancements into the SPs, but just fixes. ERDAS also is releasing ~10 minute videos via their own YouTube channel and FTP (though the URI they gave was blocked). Overall, while I was hoping to see the parts at beginning of the webinar I am pretty excited about being able to talk to someone about the upcoming changes in ERDAS Imagine when the product is closer to going gold.
I try not to talk about our adverts in posts, but the most recent ERDAS ad is for an upcoming webinar titled ERDAS IMAGINE 9.3â€¦IMAGINE Whatâ€™s Next! (Webinar) which grabbed my interest. The teaser blurb on the registration page talks about better vector support and, what I have been hankering for, OGC web service access. I will try to post something after the webinar on Thursday, but if you are an Imagine user you may want to check out this most recent in their on-going series of webinars. FYI. It looks like ERDAS Image 9.3 will ship in the 3rd quarter which I assume that means a late September release/ship…two 9.x releases in one year.
The latest mass email from ESRI regarding the International User Conference had a small blurb on a new Remote Sensing GIS Summit that has been added to the event on Sunday August 3 from 8:30 to 5:30. The preliminary agenda includes keynote and case study presentations as well as the expected technical presentations. If you are going to be in San Diego for the UC and will be in town on Sunday then you may want to check this out. We were thinking of hitting Lego Land that afternoon but I will try to mix the Remote Sensing GIS Summit (RSGS?) with the EdUC sessions in the morning.
Also, go ahead and put our live show on your schedule for Tuesday afternoon.
Just as countries are spending increasing amounts of money and resources to map their territories using high-resolution technologies such as LIDAR, some, like Ireland, are devoting significant effort to map their undersea territory (and potential resources) as well. Beginning in 2006, the INFOMAR (INtegrated Mapping FOr the Sustainable Development of Irelandâ€™s MArine Resource) project has been focused on mapping Ireland’s bays and undersea territory using LIDAR, vessel surveys, and seabed sampling.
The INFOMAR website has a web mapping application with some of the vector data related If you would like to see examples of processed LIDAR data layers of some of Ireland’s bays in Google Earth, the INFOMAR site has several KMZ files available for download here.
At a press conference on Monday, officials from India’s ISRO announced that they are planning to launch the Chandrayaan-I satellite that will orbit the Moon for two years on a terrain mapping mission. This will be part of India’s long-range efforts toward a planned manned lunar mission within the next decade. I think it’s really a toss-up as to what country will actually successfully launch the next lunar mission.
Via Times of India
Our readers Michelle and Ed both gave me a heads-up on the USGS’ plans and timeline for making the entire Landsat archive of imagery (with less than 20% cloud cover) available for download at no charge. The Landsat program has been an amazing success story, and its archives are really an incredible resource for research and education.
Here’s the current timeline for when each type of data will be available for download through the Internet (thanks Michelle):
Landsat 7 – all new global acquisitions – July 2008
Landsat 7 – all data – September 2008
Landsat 5 – all TM data – December 2008
Landsat 4 – all TM data – January 2009
Landsat 1-5 – all MSS data – January 2009