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Satellite monitoring of seasonal floods

Russia: ScanEx is conducting space imaging of the spring season floods on the largest Russian rivers on behalf of the Emercom of Russia during March-May 2010. Satellite data will be submitted to the National Centre for Crisis Management of the Emercom of Russia. It aims to provide operational data in support of the Emercom response actions. The practical experience of the 2009 seasonal floods showed that the satellite imagery data enable both to assess and take the situation under control and to make timely administrative decisions.

Using the network technology of operational satellite-based monitoring of objects, processes and phenomena called ScanNet, developed last year for similar tasks, there are plans to use the images delivered from seven-to-nine remote sensing satellites, such as:
— RADARSAT-1 and ENVISAT-1 radar satellites to ensure all-weather middle-resolution imaging,
— EROS A/B high resolution optical imagery satellites for in-depth analysis of the situation in the flooded areas,
— SPOT 4 and Landsat 5 satellites with multispectral optical scanners for assessment of the ice cover status on rivers, ice crossings and potential areas of ice blockage.

In the conditions of reduced hydrological surveys and ice reconnaissance, the data acquired from space sometimes is the only source of information about the floods that could help the operational services of Emercom in their activities, as well as RosHydroMet (Russian Federal Service for Hydrometeorology and Environmental Monitoring) and local authorities.

Sergei Shoigu, Emergency Minister, Russia, said, “We will pull out a lot of resources and manpower. Emergency response plan has been worked out to respond to any kind of emergency. In particular, the part of Lena River in Yakutia will be permanently monitored from space starting the active season of snow melting.”

Satellite data will be delivered in real-time to UniScan ground receiving stations of the Emercom of Russia network and to that of the ScanEx Center deployed in Moscow, Megion, Irkutsk, Vologda, Krasnoyarsk and Magadan. Such a wide geography of receiving stations’ location enables to do continuous imaging of the rivers on the entire Russian territory. For prompt delivery to and analysis of the information at the National Centre for Crisis Management the Kosmoplan information system is used. In addition, ScanEx has created the geo-service called Kosmosnimki – Seasonal Floods, operating in restricted access mode based on local GeoMixer technology. Access to this service is available through the web-browser window using password.

Satellite imagery materials of the spring floods dynamics can also be delivered to all interested agencies, departments and organisations – ScanEx Centre makes it possible to deploy automatic workstations for direct connection to the Kosmosnimki – Seasoanl Floods information geoportal via Internet.

Source: ScanEx