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EcoAlert: Earth Mapped in 3D for 1st Time



Earth observation satellites have completely mapped the entire land surface of Earth for the first time in a German Aerospace Center (DLR) project designed to create the world’s first single-source, high-precision, 3D digital-elevation model of Earth.

The radar systems on two satellites views the ground from two different points in space, achieving depth perception in a manner similar to binocular vision in humans. By mid-2013, the satellites will have imaged the complete land surface area of Earth, roughly 150 million square kilometers, several times.

The high-resolution radar data will be be used to address questions of land usage and vegetation, hydrology, geology and glaciology, information about the height of the snowline or the change in ice masses of the two polar regions, and geological maps of regions subject to volcanic and/or earthquake activity. The speed of ships or road vehicles can be measured, as can changes in the natural world. The work performed by these two radar satellites is also valuable for agriculture.

The Daily Galaxy via DLR


This headline is in error. The earth was mapped by the Space Shuttle in 3D in February of 2000 by the SRTM program.


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