Thursday, November 06, 2008
Bhuvan, ISRO's new eye in the sky - ISRO's take on Google
AHMEDABAD : Imagine if you could count the lions in Gir or fishermen find concentration of fish in the sea, just by dragging a mouse on a computer screen. Space Applications Centre of ISRO has just made that possible by an innovation called Bhuvan.
Bhuvan, meaning earth, is the addition to the numerous scientific innovations by SAC and is a satellite mapping tool, just like Google Earth or Wikimapia, but allows you to zoom far closer than the aerial view from a chopper. If Google Earth shows details upto 200 metres distance and Wikimapia upto 50 metres, Bhuvan will show images upto 10 metres, which means you can easily see details upto a three floor high building and also add information.
Announcing this at the Indian National Cartographic Association (INCA) International Congress here on Tuesday ISRO chairman Dr G Madhavan Nair said, "Bhuvan will use the data recorded by the Indian satellites only. The prototype of Bhuvan will be ready by the end of November and ISRO is hoping to officially launch the service by March next".
He added that while other mapping sites take four years to update, Bhuvan will be upgraded every year. "This will be able to give you an image from only 10 meters away", he said to the excited gathering.
Unlike the other two webmaps, Bhuvan will focus only on the Indian sub-continent.
"With Bhuvan we will be able to produce very local information which will be specific to only to our own country. This information available from this mapping system will be useful in addressing very local problems like floods, famines, infrastructure development, education and much more," Nair said.
"The information on Bhuvan will be layer wise and the options of viewing filtered information will be available. Inputs from a lot of local players, like farmers, fishermen and likes who know the local area in and out, will also being integrated in Bhuvan. This is for the primary reason to make it of more use to the general public," he said.
WHAT BHUVAN MEANS
Google Earth Bhuvan
Zoom levels up to 200 mt Zoom levels up to 10 mt
Single layer information Multi-layer information
Images upgraded every 4 years Images upgraded every year
No alternate viewing options Options of viewing on different dates
Uses international satellites Uses Indian satellites