USAF Official: Long Road For Distributed Sats

August 31, 2011 at 1:34 pm | Posted in Remote Sensing Law Current Events, Space Law Current Events | Leave a comment

by Sara M. Langston with the blog faculty

Source: Aviation Week

Despite growing interest from some senior U.S. Air Force leaders in exploring new architectures for the Pentagon’s satellite constellations, chances are that this “disaggregation” concept is not likely to take root any time soon, according to one senior procurement official.

Lt. Gen. Mark Shackelford, the outgoing military deputy in the Air Force acquisition office, says that the momentum today in the Air Force is behind sustaining current satellite programs in production.

Officials at Air Force Space Command and U.S. Strategic Command are exploring the disaggregation concept, which calls for distributing capabilities of satellites or constellations on various platforms in space. The idea is to field larger numbers of less capable systems to reduce the risk of a major space service outage in the event of an attack on a satellite system or an in-orbit failure.[more]

EUMETSAT gets new Director-General

August 1, 2011 at 10:29 am | Posted in Remote Sensing Law Current Events | Leave a comment

by Sara M. Langston with the blog faculty


Press Release – July 29, 2011

Alain Ratier takes up his duties as EUMETSAT’s new Director-General

Alain Ratier, 53, takes over as Director-General of EUMETSAT, the European Organisation for the Exploitation of Meteorological Satellites, on 1 August 2011.

Google to Appeal Street View Ruling in Switzerland

July 20, 2011 at 7:44 am | Posted in Remote Sensing Law Current Events | Leave a comment

by Sara M. Langston with the blog faculty

Source: Voice of America

Internet search giant Google says it will lodge an appeal with Switzerland’s highest court after a lower court ruled the company’s Street View service must obscure all of the faces and auto license plates before making its pictures available. [more]

KARI becomes newest member of the International Charter on Space and Major Disasters

July 19, 2011 at 9:56 am | Posted in Remote Sensing Law Current Events | Leave a comment

by Sara M. Langston with the blog faculty

Source: redOrbit

South Korea’s space agency has joined its international counterparts in putting satellite data at the disposal of rescue authorities following major disasters such as earthquakes and tsunamis.

The Korea Aerospace Research Institute (KARI), under the Ministry of Education, Science and Technology, formally became the newest member of the International Charter ‘Space and Major Disasters’ on 7 July.

Founded by ESA and the French space agency, CNES, the Charter is an international collaboration between the owners and operators of Earth observation missions to provide rapid access to satellite data to help disaster management authorities in the event of a natural or man-made disaster. [Full story]

India Eases Remote Sensing Restrictions

July 12, 2011 at 8:30 am | Posted in Remote Sensing Law Current Events | Leave a comment

by Sara M. Langston with the blog faculty

Source: UN-Spider

The government of India made two major data sharing policy decisions on the 4th of July regarding remote sensing. They have opened up the possibility for more government agencies to own and operate remote sensing satellites other than the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO), and they have freed up all remote sensing imagery up to one meter resolution, where the previous restriction required data up to 5.8 meter resolution to be protected.

Both restrictions have hampered the commercial viability of the organisation, and the geospatial industry development within the country. Geospatial practitioners within the country will benefit from greater access to high-resolution imagery, given the country’s ownership of the most remote sensing satellites in the world, with ten in orbit. The military will also benefit from the relaxed restrictions, as the relaxed restrictions will allow them to own and launch their own satellites for surveillance purposes.

There was increasing public outrage about these restrictions as of late, with issues surrounding the ability to locate the missing helicopter of the Arunachal Predesh chief minister. The ten-year-policy was also blamed for the ineffective use of the ISRO archive and its resulting intelligence on change within the country. This new policy should serve to jump-start broader remote sensing adoption, with more industries taking advantage of geospatial intelligence capabilities.

Official Version of India’s New Data Policy is Available

July 7, 2011 at 5:30 am | Posted in Remote Sensing Law, Remote Sensing Law Current Events | Leave a comment

by Joanne Irene Gabrynowicz with the blog faculty
Source: ISRO

Remote Sensing Data Policy (RSDP – 2011)
Recognising that Remote Sensing data provides much essential and critical information – which is an input for developmental activities at different levels, and is also of benefit to society;
Noting that a large number of users – both within and outside government, use Remote Sensing data from Indian and foreign remote sensing satellites for various developmental applications;
Taking into consideration the recent availability of very high-resolution images, from foreign and commercial remote sensing satellites, and noting the need for proper and better management of the data acquisition/ distribution from these satellites in India;
Recognising that national interest is paramount, and that security consideration of the country needs to be given utmost importance;
The Government of India adopts the Remote Sensing Data Policy (RSDP) – 2011 containing modalities for managing and/ or permitting the acquisition/ dissemination of remote sensing data in support of developmental activities.
Department of Space (DOS) of the Government of India shall be the nodal agency for all actions under this policy, unless otherwise stated.
1. For operating a remote sensing satellite from India, license and/ or permission of the Government, through the nodal agency, shall be necessary.
a. As a national commitment and as a “public good”, Government assures a continuous and improved observing/ imaging capability from its own Indian Remote Sensing Satellites (IRS) programme.
b. The Government, through the nodal agency, shall be the sole and exclusive owner of all data collected/ received from IRS. All users will be provided with only a license to use the said data, and add value to the satellite data.
c. Government reserves the right to impose control over imaging tasks and distribution of data from IRS or any other Indian remote sensing satellite,

India Loosens Policy on Sharing Remote Sensing Imagery

July 6, 2011 at 2:31 pm | Posted in Remote Sensing Law Current Events | Leave a comment

by Joanne Irene Gabrynowicz with the blog faculty

Source: ScienceInsider

NEW DELHI—Under fire for its antiquated approach to data sharing, the Indian government on 4 July unveiled a new policy covering its remote sensing satellites. The Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO), which manages the satellites, will now make available all imagery and data with a resolution as fine as 1 meter; previously, 5.8 meters resolution was the limit for open release.

“This forward looking policy will be good for India,” says ISRO Chair K. Radhakrishnan. Urban planners will be big beneficiaries, as higher resolution data will make it easier to plan telecommunications lines, roads, and housing divisions. Scientists, too, are champing at the bit. “I hope this means that Indian students and academicians can now get [high] resolution data for their work, with minimal problems,” says Thomas Snitch, a consultant to the GeoEye Foundation, a Herndon, Virginia-based remote-sensing nonprofit organization. The government will continue to limit release of imagery with a resolution of less than 1 meter.

India’s 10 remote sensing satellites, the largest such constellation in the civilian domain, can image to a resolution of almost 80 cm. ISRO came under intense criticism last March after the government’s auditor found that almost 89% of images from the satellites were not being used.

Earth Imagery Firm RapidEye Seeking Bankruptcy ProtectionSource

June 30, 2011 at 11:14 am | Posted in Remote Sensing Law, Remote Sensing Law Current Events | Leave a comment

by Joanne Irene Gabrynowicz with the blog faculty

Source: Space News

by Peter de Selding

PARIS — Germany’s pioneering RapidEye Earth imagery provider, which has taken the privatization of satellite Earth imagery perhaps further than any other company, has filed for Germany’s equivalent of Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection after breaching several of its loan covenants, RapidEye Chief Executive Wolfgang Biedermann said June 2.

Brandenberg-based RapidEye, whose constellation of five 150-kilogram optical Earth observation satellites was launched in August 2008, will continue operations and expects to emerge from a court-supervised restructuring with a more manageable debt, Biedermann said.

In an interview, Biedermann said RapidEye, which has never sought to hide the difficulties of a business model without a major long-term government customer guarantee, is confident that its principal financial sponsors are willing to reorganize the company’s debt profile to allow the business to proceed. Whether that will include new ownership as part of the insolvency proceedings, he said, is unknown. More…

China and UK strike space deal

June 29, 2011 at 10:25 am | Posted in Remote Sensing Law Current Events | Leave a comment

by Sara M. Langston with the blog faculty

Source: BBC News

Chinese and UK companies have agreed to a deal that will result in three high-resolution Earth observation spacecraft being built to map China’s extraordinary growth from orbit.

The deal was penned between Guildford satellite imagery provider DMCii and Beijing-based company 21AT. [more]

Coalition of Geospatial Organizations Addresses Ex Parte Presentation re LightSquared Subsidiary, LLC, File No. SAT-MOD-20101118-00239

June 16, 2011 at 3:11 pm | Posted in Remote Sensing Law Current Events | Leave a comment

by Joanne Irene Gabrynowicz with the blog faculty

Source: Coalition of Geospatial Organizations


Download Letter

Coalition of Geospatial Organizations 


June 15, 2011

Ms. Marlene H. Dortch


Federal Communications Commission

445 12th Street, SW

Washington, DC 20554

Re: Ex Parte Presentation re LightSquared Subsidiary, LLC, File No. SAT-MOD-20101118-00239 

Dear Ms. Dortch:

I am writing to you on behalf of The Coalition of Geospatial Organizations (COGO), a coalition of 15 national professional societies, trade associations, and membership organizations in the geospatial field, representing more than 35,000 individual producers and users of geospatial data and technology.

The stakeholder groups that make up COGO speak with one voice wherever possible on geospatial data and policy issues. COGO only takes public policy positions with a unanimous vote of its member organizations. In this regard, COGO seeks to express its urgent and critical concern regarding the issues under consideration by the Commission in the referenced proceeding.

The members of COGO’s organizations rely very heavily on high-precision Global Positioning System (GPS) receiver equipment to carry out their missions. The precise data obtained through the use of advanced GPS receiver equipment has virtually revolutionized their ability to collect and process geospatial data in a manner not possible without access to uninterrupted GPS signals. As a consequence, these members have developed and continue to innovate applications that affect virtually every sector of our economy. COGO and its member organizations are therefore very concerned that the introduction of high-power, high-density terrestrial-only broadband transmitters in the spectrum adjacent to the Radionavigation Satellite Service operating in the 1559 – 1610 MHz frequency band will seriously interfere with reception of GPS signals operating in this band. Any level of possible interference will affect the ability to collect sufficiently robust GPS signals to achieve the critical task of geospatial data collection. Our concern is not simply with interference to existing applications, but the very possible impact this interference could have on our members’ ability to develop future advanced applications.

COGO is aware that LightSquared has been required to submit a report on June 15, 2011 detailing the results of a Commission-mandated study of the potential for LightSquared terrestrial-only broadband transmitters to desensitize GPS receivers. COGO looks forward to reviewing the report and providing the Commission with its views on the results reported in the study. COGO supports the Administration’s goal of increasing access to mobile broadband which also benefits our members. However, increasing broadband access at the expense of

Ms. Marlene H. Dortch June 15, 2011 Page -2-

interfering with GPS signals portends a negative outcome for the Nation and is not a solution that advances the public interest. GPS is a proven national information utility that supports national security, homeland security, public safety and a broad range of commercial applications.

COGO respectfully requests that the Commission not provide any further approvals for LightSquared’s planned deployment of high-density, high-power terrestrial-only broadband transmitters in the band adjacent to the spectrum where GPS operates until the issue of interference to GPS is fully understood and appropriate measures are proven to be workable to avoid such interference. These measures must ensure sustainment of the national GPS utility and proven positioning and navigation information, as well as continuing innovation that benefits the Nation and that delivers the operational performance on which our COGO organizations and their members depend.

Respectfully submitted,

Geney Terry, GISP, MGIS

2011 COGO Chair

American Congress on Surveying and Mapping (ACSM)

American Society for Photogrammetry and Remote Sensing (ASPRS)

Association of American Geographers (AAG)

Cartography and Geographic Information Society (CaGIS)

Geographic Information Systems Certification Institute (GISCI)

International Association of Assessing Officers (IAAO)

Management Association for Private Photogrammetric Surveyors (MAPPS)

National States Geographic Information Council (NSGIC)

United States Geospatial Intelligence Foundation (USGIF)

University Consortium for Geographic Information Science (UCGIS)

Urban Regional Information Systems Association (URISA)

Next Page »

Blog at
Entries and comments feeds.