New satellite service for disaster teams

May 3, 2006

Global Relief Technologies, GeoEye and Telenor launched a joint venture to provide satellite imagery to disaster-relief teams in remote areas of the world.

The product is designed to feed pictures from space directly to crews on the scene for use in mapping the deployment of resources.

"Humanitarian and emergency response organizations' demand for satellite imagery has persisted from one crisis to another," said James Abrahamson, a former U.S. Air Force general and now a member of the GRT board. "Facilitating the delivery of map-accurate satellite imagery is of critical importance to emergency workers since it provides a common operating picture that is invaluable to relief operations."

In the recent past, relief organizations have had to depend on U.S. government satellites for their bird's-eye view of the impacted areas they were being deployed in. The process was time-consuming and gave managers only limited views.

With the launch of Broadband Global Area Network, satellite operator Telenor is now able to transmit large amounts of data in a format that will allow detailed pictures to be downloaded in remote areas on laptops and PDAs.

Copyright 2006 by United Press International

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