Tropical Cyclone Fani in the Indian Ocean captured by the Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) on NASA’s Terra satellite on 1 May 2019. Image: NASA.

The United Nations Office for Outer Space Affairs (UNOOSA) has opened registrations for the 9th Annual UN-SPIDER Conference in Beijing “United Nations International Conference on Space-based Technologies for Disaster Risk Reduction – ‘A Policy Perspective’”. The registration deadline is 15 July 2019.

The conference, which will take place 11-12 September 2019, will also celebrate 10 years of the United Nations Platform for Space-based Information for Disaster Management and... read more

Publishing Date: 13/05/2019
This cropped, false-colour image captured with Sentinel-2A on 18 November 2016, depicts northwestern China. Since the 1960s, the Tian Shan glaciers have lost a quarter of their ice mass and scientists estimate that they will shrink by half until 2050. The melting process of glaciers pose threats to communities living downstream. Image: ESA.

After completing in-orbit tests, China officially put two new Earth observation satellites into operation on 21 March. As new part of China’s High-definition Earth Observation Satellite (CHEOS), Gaofen-5 and -6 will aid in environmental protection, agricultural and forestry surveys and disaster relief.

Gaofen-5 and -6 will improve China’s capability to receive ground images and... read more

Publishing Date: 08/04/2019
NASA-NOAA’s Suomi National Polar-orbiting Partnership satellite captured an image of Cyclone Felleng in the Southern Indian Ocean in 2013. Image: NASA/CC BY 2.0

China and France launched a new joint Earth observation satellite on 29 October which aims to assist with a range of tasks including global marine monitoring, disaster management, and risk reduction as well as tracking the effects of climate change.

The China-France Oceanography Satellite (CFOSat) was put into orbit via a Long March 2C rocket which lifted off from the Jiuquan Satellite Launch... read more

Publishing Date: 07/11/2018
Participants at the 8th UN-SPIDER conference in Beijing.

The United Nations Office for Outer Space Affairs (UNOOSA), through the United Nations Platform for Spaced-Based Information for Disaster Management and Emergency... read more

Publishing Date: 24/10/2018

China launched a new satellite on 7 September which aims to assist in the forecasting and monitoring of marine disasters. 

The HY-1C satellite was put into orbit via a Long March-2C rocket which lifted off from the Taiyuan Satellite Launch Centre in northern China.

The satellite’s overall aim is to improve understanding of marine waters by monitoring ocean colour and water temperatures, providing crucial data on the global oceanic environment

In terms of disasters, the HY-1C satellite aims to improve China's ability to... read more

Publishing Date: 12/09/2018
An image captured by the 16m resolution multispectral wide-angle colour camera on the Gaofen-6 earth observation satellite. Image: CNS/RADI/CAS.

China launched its latest Earth observation satellite, Gaofen-6, which will be for disaster monitoring and agricultural research on 2 June. Another satellite to monitor weather-related disasters, Fengyun-2H, was launched by China on 5 June.

On 2 June, the Gaofen-6 satellite was launched via a Long March-2D rocket which lifted off from the Jiuquan Satellite Launch Centre in northwest China. The data collected by the high-... read more

Publishing Date: 12/06/2018
Logo of the International Charter "Space and Major Disasters"

The International Charter Space and Major Disasters has been activated for forest fires in China on 4 June.

Wildfires have broken out in the mountainous region of the northern Chinese province of Inner Mongolia. A prolonged period of high temperatures and dry conditions fuelled the forest fires, which have spread to over 5,000 hectares due to high winds.

Strong and changing winds have made firefighting treacherous and over 4,000 people have been deployed to tackle the fires.

The Charter activation request was made by the National Disaster Reduction Center of China and the project managers will be the China National Space Administration (CNSA) and the National Disaster Reduction Centre of China (NDRCC).

Publishing Date: 05/06/2018
Beijing from the Sentinel-1A satellite. Image: Copernicus Data/ESA (2014).

The United Nations Office for Outer Space Affairs (UNOOSA) and the Ministry of Emergency Management of the People’s Republic of China (MEM) will hold this year’s International Conference on Space-based Technologies for Disaster Risk Reduction from 24 to 26 October 2018 in Beijing, China. The conference, entitled “Enhancing Disaster... read more

Publishing Date: 25/05/2018
Images via a Gaofen satellite which monitored a landslide in Guizhou, China, in September 2017. Image: Institute of Remote Sensing and Digital Earth of the Chinese Academy of Sciences (RADI/CAS)

China launched three Gaofen-1 Earth observation satellites on 31 March. These high-resolution satellites will be used in a range of different fields, including... read more

Publishing Date: 16/04/2018
On November 8, China launched satellite Yaogan 28 from the Taiyuan space center in Shanxi Province (Image: Google).

On November 8, China launched the... read more

Publishing Date: 10/11/2015

From 17 to 22 September 2015, UNOOSA/UN-SPIDER organised a training programme on ‘Earth observation technologies for earthquake damage assessment’ jointly with the  National Disaster Reduction Center of China (NDRCC), Asia Pacific Space Cooperation Organisation (APSCO) and Regional Centre for Space Science and Technology Education in Asia and the Pacific (China) (affiliated to the United Nations). This training was an extended event back to back with the United Nations International Conference on Space-based Technologies for ... read more

Publishing Date: 21/09/2015

The United Nations International Conference on Space-based Technologies for Disaster Management - "A consolidating role in the implementation of the Sendai Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction: 2015-2030 “ was successfully conducted from 14 to 16 September 2015. The conference was co-organized by UN-SPIDER Beijing Office of the UN Office for Outer Space Affairs (UNOOSA) and the Ministry of Civil Affairs of the People’s Republic of China (PRC), in collaboration with the Department of Treaty and Law, Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MoFA) of PRC,... read more

Publishing Date: 21/09/2015
Satellite image of smoke produced by massive explosions in Tianjin (Image: NASA)

On the morning of August 13 the China Aerospace Science and Technology Corp activated its emergency response mechanism, after the fatal warehouse explosions that hit Tianjin port city. It used at least eight of its satellite constellation to monitor rescue and damage operatins thanks to their clear images.

Specifically, the Gaofen 1 and 2 high-... read more

Publishing Date: 24/08/2015
The province of Jilin to launch its first remote sensing commercial satellite (Image: NASA)

The Northeast province of Jilin in China is planning to launch in October the country's first self-developed remote sensing satellite for commercial use.

Jilin-1 is composed of a group of four satellites: one in charge of high-definition imagery, one to test new space technologies and the other two to capture videos, as explained by Xuan Ming, board chairman of Chang Guang Satellite Technology, the company responsible for launching.

Beside their commercial aim, the pictures and videos provided by these four satellites will help forecasting and mitigating geological disasters as well as assisting the research of natural resources.

The project has been developed by the Changchun Institute of Optics, Fine Mechanics and Physics, of the Chinese Academy of Sciences.

Publishing Date: 05/08/2015
The China-Brazil Earth Resource Satellite-04 can cover areas of China's size (Image: NASA)

The China-Brazil Earth Resource Satellite-04 (CBERS-04), an Earth observation satellite jointly developed by both countries, was put into operation on Tuesday, July 13, after its launch on December 7. 

Developed by China's Academy of Space Technology and Brazil's National Institution of Space Research, the CBERS-04 can cover areas as big as China in 26 days and will be used to monitor geological disasters and estimate crops, among others. Its predecessor, the CBERS-03 was already launched from Taiyuan Satellite Launch Center on December 9, 2013, but did not reach the proper orbit.

African and Latin... read more

Publishing Date: 15/07/2015
The new arrangement between China and EU will enhance remote sensing activities (Image: NASA)

China has signed an agreement with the European Union to enhance collaborative research in the field of remote sensing.

During the 17th bilateral summit between the European Union and the People's Republic of China that took place on Monday 29 June in Brussels, officials representing Europe’s Joint Research Centre (JRC) and the Chinese Academy of Sciences’ Institute of Remote Sensing arranged a deal to closely cooperate in the area of remote sensing.

“Under this new agreement, the co-operation will be reinforced and extended to promising areas, such as air quality, human settlement detection and characterisation, land and soil mapping, land cover mapping,... read more

Publishing Date: 02/07/2015
Satellite image of Northern China (Image: ESA)

China carried out on June 26 the unexpected launch of a new Earth Observation satellite called Gaofen-8 from the Taiyuan Satellite launch Center in Shanxi province. The launch was not announced beforehand by the authorities but is part of the China High-Resolution Earth Observation System (CHEOS), a series of high-resolution optical Earth Observation satellites placed in various orbits that will consist of eight or nine satellites.

This new space artifact was developed by China Aerospace Science and Technology Corporation (CASC) and according to Chinese officials, it is part of a civilian programme whose... read more

Publishing Date: 01/07/2015
Nearly 50 government representatives and experts from 11 countries, 7 regional and international organizations and 14 research institutes attended the workshop

From 2 to 5 June 2015 UN-SPIDER, the National Disaster Reduction Centre of China (NDRCC), and UNESCAP jointly organized the four-day workshop of East Asia Summit (EAS) workshop on ‘Applications of Space Information Technology in Major Natural Disaster Monitoring and Assessment’ and 2nd ASEAN workshop on ‘Development of mechanisms for acquisition and utilisation of space-based information during emergency... read more

Publishing Date: 12/06/2015
Participants of the first training programme of the UN affiliated Regional Centre for Space Science and Technology Education in Asia and the Pacific (RCSSTEAP)

From 20 to 29 April 2015, the UN affiliated Regional Centre for Space Science and Technology Education in Asia and the Pacific (RCSSTEAP), based in Beihang University, Bejijng, organized the ten-day course "Satellite Navigation Technology and Applications". A total of 30 participants from 11 countries participated in the training programme. The aim of the training was to support early career researchers and professionals working on the topics of Global Navigation Satellite Systems (GNSS) and BeiDou technologies.

Invited experts came from France, Croatia, as well as from domestic... read more

Publishing Date: 04/05/2015
Approximately 6.5 million people were affected in the region (Image: HDX)

On Saturday, 25 April 2015 a 7.8 magnitude earthquake hit Nepal, India, Bangladesh, and India with several aftershocks following on Saturday and Sunday. GDACS estimates that 6.5 million people are affected. Several actors from the satellite and mapping communities have become active in supporting response efforts in the region; particularly in Nepal, which was most severely affected.

Publishing Date: 27/04/2015
Ground track of BeiDou 2012 (Image: NASA/ Secretlondon)

The Chinese BeiDou Navigation Satellite System (BDS) now includes a new-generation satellite, launched into space on Monday, 30 of March.

The 17th BDS satellite has been launched from the Xichang Satellite Launch Centre in the south western Chinese province of Sichuan. The launch marked the beginning of an expansion of the BDS from regional to global coverage.

The satellite will be tasked with testing a new type of navigation signalling and inter-satellite links, providing a basis to start building the global network, according to Business Standard on the basis of Xinhua news agency's report.

The new satellite was developed by the Shanghai Engineering Centre for Microsatellites, a non-profit organisation established by the Chinese... read more

Publishing Date: 02/04/2015
Typhoon approaching China (Image: NASA)

Last Friday, China’s most advanced earth observation satellite, the Gaofen-2, was put into service after being launched in August.

The Gaofen-2 is the second of seven satellites that will be launched for the Gaofen mission, China's high-definition observation project, before 2020. The project was initiated in May 2010 and Gaofen-1 was launched in April 2013.

The new satellite is able to see 0.8-meter-long objects from space in full color and collect multispectral images of objects 3.2 meters or longer, according to the Chinese State Administration of Science, Technology and Industry for National Defense.

The main goal of the Gaofen series is to provide all-weather, 24-hour services... read more

Publishing Date: 09/03/2015
2013 Typhoon Haiyan in Philippines (Image: DFID/ Henry Donati)

More than 50 percent of the most exposed cities in the world for natural disasters are located in Philippines, China, Japan and Bangladesh, according to a recent publication by the global risk analytics company Verisk Maplecroft.

The 5th annual Natural Hazards Risk Atlas (NHRA) shows that of the 100 cities with the greatest exposure to natural hazards, 21 are located in the Philippines, 16 in China, 11 in Japan and 8 in Bangladesh. The combined risk of tropical storms and cyclones, floods, earthquakes, tsunamis and severe storms or extra-tropical cyclones, among others, has placed the small capital city of Port Vila, on the isolated South Pacific island nation of Vanuatu, on top as the world's riskiest ones.

The Philippines is the most exposed country with eight cities among the ten most risky at global level due to a high risk of tropical storms, earthquakes and landslides. In addition... read more

Publishing Date: 09/03/2015
Typhoon USAGI approaching East coast of China

China has announced that its meteorological satellite Fengyun-II 08 has been successfully launched from Xichang Satellite Centre, located in Sichuan Province, South-West China, on 31 December 2014.

The purpose of the satellite will be to collect meteorological, maritime and hydrological data. These data will be used for weather forecasting and environment monitoring.

China has already put in orbit another satellite of the same type, the Fengyun-II 07. It was launched on January 13, 2012, and is today fully operational.

Publishing Date: 05/01/2015
Satellite image of the Amazon

Chinese and Brazilian officials have announced their intention to deepen their cooperation in satellite development and applications. The space-based collaboration between both nations has already been fruitful in various fields, including remote sensing and Earth observation.

The announcement came as part of a bilateral meeting on space collaboration between both nations held in Beijing, China. During the meeting, images of the jointly developed remote sensing satellite Ziyuan-1-04, as known in China, or... read more

Publishing Date: 16/12/2014


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