DigitalGlobe Offers Satellite Images of Nepal Earthquake

April 27, 2015  - By 0 Comments

In response to the devastating 7.8-magnitude earthquake that struck central Nepal on April 25, DigitalGlobe has made high-resolution satellite imagery of the affected areas freely available online to all groups involved in the response and recovery effort through the company’s FirstLook initiative.

This imagery can be accessed via http://services.digitalglobe.com.

Username: nepal
Password: forcrisis​

The below before and after images show the destruction of the nine-storey Dharahara Tower, which was built in 1832 and was a UNESCO World Heritage site.

The Dharahara Tower in Kathmandu, in a DigitalGlobe satellite image taken in October 2014. (Image credit: DigitalGlobe)

The Dharahara Tower in Kathmandu, in a DigitalGlobe satellite image taken in October 2014. (Image credit: DigitalGlobe)

The Dharahara Tower is shown leveled following the earthquake (Image credit: DigitalGlobe).

The Dharahara Tower is shown leveled following the earthquake (Image credit: DigitalGlobe).

Specifically, DigitalGlobe activated FirstLook, the subscription service that provides emergency management and humanitarian workers with fast, web-based access to pre- and post-event images of the impacted area. DigitalGlobe captured imagery of the area April 26 through heavy cloud cover with its WorldView-1, and WorldView-3 and GeoEye-1 satellites. WorldView-2 and WorldView-3 have been tasked to image the area again April 28. Pre-event imagery dating back to April 1 is also available to aid understanding and coordination for on-the-ground missions.

In addition, DigitalGlobe has activated Tomnod, the crowdsourcing platform that allows web-connected volunteers around the globe to help disaster response teams by mapping damage from this earthquake. While satellite imagery on its own is useful, greater benefit comes from extracting meaningful information that can be used by first responder and recovery agencies.

By visiting the Tomnod website, users can participate in the Nepal campaign by tagging damaged buildings, roads, and areas of major destruction to inform disaster response teams on the ground. Whether a person donates five minutes or five hours, anyone can analyze DigitalGlobe imagery to help make a difference.

Tracy Cozzens

About the Author:

Tracy Cozzens has served as managing editor of GPS World magazine since 2006. She also is editor of GPS World’s newsletters and the sister website Geospatial Solutions. She has worked in government, for non-profits, and in corporate communications, editing a variety of publications for audiences ranging from federal government contractors to teachers.

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