Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

New Space Observations Poised To Save Lives From Floods, Landslides

Date:
May 24, 2006
Source:
NASA/Goddard Space Flight Center
Summary:
Using NASA's advanced Earth-observing satellites, scientists have discovered a new opportunity to build early detection systems that might protect thousands from floods and landslides. This potential breakthrough in disaster monitoring and warning links satellite observations of soil type, vegetation and land slope with observations of rainfall, rivers and topography.

Using NASA's advanced Earth-observing satellites, scientists have discovered a new opportunity to build early detection systems that might protect thousands from floods and landslides.

Related Articles


This potential breakthrough in disaster monitoring and warning links satellite observations of soil type, vegetation and land slope with observations of rainfall, rivers and topography.

"Flood and landslides are the most widespread natural hazards on Earth, responsible for thousands of deaths and billions of dollars in property damage every year," said Bob Adler, project scientist for the Tropical Rainfall Measuring Mission at NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center, Greenbelt, Md., and lead scientist of one of four projects that share a similar focus. "Between 1985 and 2000 over 300,000 people lost their lives to flooding and their associated landslides. Currently, no system exists at either a regional or a global scale to monitor rainfall conditions that may trigger these disasters."

"Our use of space as a vantage point to better understand floods and landslides will enable agencies and other public officials charged with doing so to actually apply what we're learning in ways that will make a tangible difference in a lot of lives all over the world," said Yang Hong, a research scientist at Goddard and lead scientist of one of the research projects. The research used data from several NASA satellites -- the Tropical Rainfall Measuring Mission, Aqua, the Shuttle Radar Topography Mission, QuikSCAT and Earth Observing-1 -- and NOAA's Geostationary Operational Environmental satellites.

The havoc of landslides and floods is felt most acutely in parts of the world without extensive flood and rainfall monitoring ground networks.

Scientists approached the study of how satellite remote sensing can be applied to create flood and landslide detection from several angles. Space-based remote sensing allows scientists to look at the whole earth from above, improving their understanding of how Earth's system components behave and interact with each other.

Robert Brakenridge and his colleagues at Dartmouth College, Hanover, N.H., are using satellite microwave sensors to estimate water discharge from rivers by measuring almost daily changes in river widths.

"This month much of New England suffered from its worst flooding since 1936, causing governors in several states to declare states of emergency," said Brakenridge. "Satellite observations can be absolutely essential in lessening the severity on the local economies and possible injuries in such future occurrences if they can be galvanized to create more reliable warning systems."

Kwabena Asante, a senior scientist at U.S. Geological Survey in Sioux Falls, S.D., led research that puts forward an innovative method of mapping floods around the globe using a combination of data from NASA's Tropical Rainfall Measuring Mission and the Shuttle Radar Topography Mission. This new development could offer a practical solution to the significant challenge of creating cost-effective early warning systems particularly needed in data scarce, rural areas.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by NASA/Goddard Space Flight Center. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

NASA/Goddard Space Flight Center. "New Space Observations Poised To Save Lives From Floods, Landslides." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 24 May 2006. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2006/05/060524222230.htm>.
NASA/Goddard Space Flight Center. (2006, May 24). New Space Observations Poised To Save Lives From Floods, Landslides. ScienceDaily. Retrieved December 21, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2006/05/060524222230.htm
NASA/Goddard Space Flight Center. "New Space Observations Poised To Save Lives From Floods, Landslides." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2006/05/060524222230.htm (accessed December 21, 2014).

Share This


More From ScienceDaily



More Earth & Climate News

Sunday, December 21, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Raw: Lava Inches Closer to Highway

Raw: Lava Inches Closer to Highway

AP (Dec. 21, 2014) Officials have opened a new road on Hawaii's Big Island for drivers to take care of their daily needs if encroaching lava from Kilauea Volcano crosses a highway and cuts them off from the rest of the island. (Dec. 20) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Raw: Scuba Diving Santa Off Florida Keys

Raw: Scuba Diving Santa Off Florida Keys

AP (Dec. 20, 2014) A scuba diving Santa Claus explored the waters of the Florida Keys National Marine Sanctuary. Dive shop owner Spencer Slate makes the dive each year to help raise money for charity. (Dec. 20) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Obama: Better Ways to Create Jobs Than Keystone Pipeline

Obama: Better Ways to Create Jobs Than Keystone Pipeline

AFP (Dec. 19, 2014) US President Barack Obama says that construction of the Keystone pipeline would have 'very little impact' on US gas prices and believes there are 'more direct ways' to create construction jobs. Duration: 00:47 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Raw: Lava on Track to Hit Hawaii Market

Raw: Lava on Track to Hit Hawaii Market

AP (Dec. 19, 2014) Lava from an active volcano on Hawaii's Big Island slowed slightly but stayed on track to hit a shopping center in the small town of Pahoa. (Dec. 19) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories


Plants & Animals

Earth & Climate

Fossils & Ruins

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins