[HOT] Fwd: NASA data

Stacey Maples stacemaples at stanford.edu
Mon Apr 27 02:05:17 UTC 2015

SOrry, should have posted to the group for general comment: 
----- Original Message -----

From: "Stacey Maples" <stacemaples at stanford.edu> 
To: "Alex Barth" <alex at mapbox.com> 
Sent: Sunday, April 26, 2015 7:03:55 PM 
Subject: NASA data 

Alex, I've just been looped intothe following conversation with some NASA VIIRS folks: 


Yes, I am closely monitoring the situation using our VIIRS nighttime imaging products. Unfortunately, the affected region in Nepal was predominantly cloud-covered yesterday (seen in red in the attached image). I will check tomorrow ’s scene (~8:00 EST) and get back to you. 

As for other agency efforts, the U.S. Geological Survey's (USGS) Earth Resources Observations and Science Hazard Data Distribution System facilitates the sharing of information whenever the International Charter on Space and Major Disasters is activated. The current point of contact (c. 2014) is Brenda Jones (cced:). 

Our data are particularly useful for spotting individual settlements and road networks (both rural and urban) that have lost electricity after a major disaster. Here’s an example for the DC derecho storm: http://thekojonnamdishow.org/shows/2015-01-22/night_watch_washington_from_space . 

Note that we can only produce a reliable product once we get a clear-sky look of the region. The next target of opportunity is scheduled for tomorrow at ~8:00 EST. I’ll schedule a standing order to make sure that we can process the data quickly. 

In the meantime: 

(1) Besides Gorkha district (Lat/Lon?), it would be good if either of you (or someone else) could send us a list of locations and their corresponding (lat/lon) geographic coordinates; esp. if you are interested in assessing underreported areas. Either that, or we can provide the entire map, and let someone else do the final change assessment. 

(2) Once we generate a first * preliminary * snapshot of the Nepal region, we can also continue providing data for subsequent time periods. This should help with estimating the overall recovery of local infrastructure and services – i.e., one would hope that certain areas would come back online; particularly across major cities. Let me know ASAP if this is of interest to you. 

One final caveat: our instrument’s (VIIRS) overpass time isn’t ideal for this situation -- i.e., we can only retrieve a “snapshot” of the greater Nepal region at ~01:00-01:30 AM local time. If the power grid is compromised (which is highly likely); then the local utility may be forced to institute rationing during this period. This would make it difficult to discriminate between affected areas. 

Is this of utility for prioritizing? We'll have it sometime, tomorrow. 

In F,L&T, 
Stace Maples 
Geospatial Manager 
Stanford Geospatial Center 
staceymaples at G+ 

Skype: stacey.maples 


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