Tag Archive | Remote sensing

New NRC Report: Future U.S. Workforce for Geospatial Intelligence

Mapping Sciences Committee, National Research Council Preview Report Release, Jan 2013

Authors:
Committee on the Future U.S. Workforce for Geospatial Intelligence; Board on Earth Sciences and Resources; Board on Higher Education and Workforce; Division on Earth and Life Studies; National Research Council

Abstract: We live in a changing world with multiple and evolving threats to national security, including terrorism, asymmetrical warfare (conflicts between agents with different military powers or tactics), and social unrest. Visually depicting and assessing these threats using imagery and other geographically-referenced information is the mission of the National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency (NGA). As the nature of the threat evolves, so do the tools, knowledge, and skills needed to respond. The challenge for NGA is to maintain a workforce that can deal with evolving threats to national security, ongoing scientific and technological advances, and changing skills and expectations of workers.

Future U.S. Workforce for Geospatial Intelligence assesses the supply of expertise in 10 geospatial intelligence (GEOINT) fields, including 5 traditional areas (geodesy and geophysics, photogrammetry, remote sensing, cartographic science, and geographic information systems and geospatial analysis) and 5 emerging areas that could improve geospatial intelligence (GEOINT fusion, crowdsourcing, human geography, visual analytics, and forecasting). The report also identifies gaps in expertise relative to NGA’s needs and suggests ways to ensure an adequate supply of geospatial intelligence expertise over the next 20 years.

To download a PDF copy of the report, visit Future U.S. Workforce for Geospatial Intelligence.

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Landsat Turns 40, What’s Next?

 

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USGS Keeps Landsat 5 Satellite Alive

Geoplace.com, July 9, 2012

The U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) injected a bit of life into its aging Landsat 5 satellite, which has orbited Earth more than 150,000 times since its launch in 1984 and has been experiencing problems with its thematic mapper (TM) instrument. Engineers have been able to power-on a long-dormant data-collection instrument aboard the satellite—the multispectral scanner (MSS), which has been offline for more than a decade. USGS now is acquiring MSS data over the United States only. The news is significant, because USGS continues to work toward launch of an eighth Landsat satellite, meaning that data from current Landsat craft still are key to Earth-observing operations. Landsat 7, activated in 1999, continues to collect images worldwide. But, in 2003, Landsat 7 experienced a hardware failure that caused a 22-percent loss of data in every image. Meanwhile, the Landsat Data Continuity Mission (LDCM or Landsat 8), is scheduled for launch in January 2013.

For full text of the article, visit USGS Keeps Landsat 5 Satellite Alive | Articles – Publishing Titles | GeoPlace.

Do the NGA cuts mark a failure of the commercial satellite imagery market?

by Matt Ball, Sensors and Systems, V1 Magazine, June 26, 2012

GeoEye received word late last week that the National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency (NGA) would be making a significant cut in their 2013 funding under the Enhanced View contract, offering only a three or nine-month option. While there is still some indication that Congress might fully fund the program, the news was bleak enough to send GeoEye stock falling more than twenty percent. In this time of tightened government budgets, and unstable global economy, it’s tough on all businesses to remain stable, but combined with dramatic defense cuts, the pressures form a perfect storm for the U.S. commercial satellite imaging industry. The overwhelming defense demand has seen both companies grow strongly over the past decade, with capacity devoted mainly to this task. That strong demand has meant less of an emphasis on growing the commercial applications of this unique spatial intelligence, and without a broad base, some time will be needed to fill revenue gaps. …

For full text of this op-ed, visit Sensors & Systems – Do the NGA cuts mark a failure of the commercial satellite imagery market?.

EnhancedView’s cloudy future

Late last week GeoEye announced an offer to acquire its chief rival in the commercial remote sensing market, DigitalGlobe, a proposal that was quickly rebuffed by DigitalGlobe. Jeff Foust of The Space Review reports that while there may not be a merger or acquisition involving those companies now, proposed cuts in the government’s EnhancedView program could lead to major changes in the industry in the near future.
http://www.thespacereview.com/article/2077/1

Protecting Indigenous Peoples’ Privacy from “Eyes in the Sky”

Wayne Madsen, Lead Scientist, Computer Sciences Corporation, 1994

Abstract: This paper investigates the problems associated with remote sensing from space-based platforms as they relate to the protection of the rights of indigenous peoples around the world. Many nations and international organizations recognize a right of individual privacy. This paper advances the notion of a right to collective privacy, what can best be described as a “communal right of privacy,” especially as it relates to the rights of indigenous people to be free of wanton exploitation from data on their lands and waters that are collected from orbiting surveillance and sensing platforms. Indigenous peoples argue that since they are the direct descendants of the original peoples who settled their lands before conquest by outsiders, they have an “inalienable” right to their territories and the natural resources contained therein (Nagengast, Stavenhagen, and Kearney, 1992, 31). Clearly, the sparse number of international treaties and other regimes that seek to protect the rights of indigenous people to their lands and resources must be strengthened to address privacy protections against wanton snooping from overhead surveillance satellites.

For full text of this article, which is still very relevant today, click here.

Kevin Pomfret’s Top 10 Spatial Law and Policy Stories of 2011

Spatial Law and Policy: Top 10 Stories of 2011

by Kevin Pomfret, Spatial Law and Policy Blob, December 27, 2011

  • U.S. Supreme Court to address law enforcement’s use of tracking devices.
  • Impact of budget cuts becoming more pronounced
  • Privacy issues regarding geolocation becomes international story
  • Increased efforts to regulate Internet
  • Commercial use of drones becoming a reality
  • Lightsquared/GPS dispute
  • India revises its Remote Sensing Data Policy
  • Indonesia passes Geospatial Information Act
  • Big Data

For full text of Kevin’s article with a great discussion on each topic and useful links, visit Spatial Law and Policy: Spatial Law and Policy: Top 10 Stories of 2011.

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