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EASOS: Addressing Major Environmental Challenges in Malaysia

Environmental challenges present a serious social and economic threat to the Malaysian people. In 2014 alone, the combined impact on the Malaysian economy of flooding, marine pollution and illegal logging was estimated at more than $12.5 Bn. 

In June 2016, the UK Space Agency (UKSA) announced the opening of their International Partnerships Programme (IPP): a multi-year programme leveraging on the space sector’s space knowledge, expertise and capability to provide a sustainable, economic or societal benefit to undeveloped nations and developing economies. With Satellite Applications Catapult as Prime, Sterling Geo joined a consortium of SMEs to deliver an Earth and Sea Observation System (EASOS) for Malaysia, addressing the individual themes of IPP.

Whilst the challenges of flooding, marine pollution and illegal logging are quite different, there are many common factors between them and all would benefit from wide-area situational awareness. Providing relevant government departments with information-driven decision support tools will foster enhanced preventative measures and post-event response to these challenges. The EASOS project will deliver, trial and evaluate each of the solutions with the respective Malaysian government departments, encouraging common information sharing and applications support infrastructure. This will create sustainable, long-term operational capability in-country, and deliver economic returns to the Malaysian government and an improved quality of life to its people.

We provide world-leading technology for analysing remotely sensed imagery, integrated with mapping and field-based data to provide solutions and support for applications including national aerial photography management and protected landscape monitoring and management. Our clients work extensively on flood management and impact assessment, marine monitoring and environmental change detection projects. Our strength is in spatial data management and integration; ingesting earth observation data, enhancing, analysing and providing an "Answer as a Service" through intuitive presentation from end-user applications and dashboard creation.

Backed by Hexagon Geospatial and Safe Software, Sterling Geo offer a complete platform of capability including image processing (ERDAS IMAGINE), GIS (GeoMedia), data management (APOLLO and SDI), data distribution and delivery (APOLLO), application and dashboard creation (Smart M.Apps and M.App Enterprise), data ingestion and cleansing (FME), analytics engine creation (ERDAS IMAGINE and GeoMedia), and API management (SDI).

Utilising the Hexagon Geospatial and Safe Software capabilities, the data fusion element of the EASOS project is designed to:

Late in March, as part of the technological transition to in-country operations, our ERDAS IMAGINE expert, Johnnie Shannon, paid a flying visit to Malaysia to deliver a three-day training course. The program was designed to give a number of identified end users an introduction to both remote sensing and image processing, progressing on to developing / processing flow lines with the ERDAS IMAGINE Spatial Modeler.

Students on the course came from the Malaysian National Space Agency, the Department of Irrigation and Drainage and the Malaysian National Defence University. There was a range of experience on the course; from none to PhD level and years of practice. Feedback from all participants was extremely positive with the participants pleased with the level of information and the ease with which some fairly complex spatial models could be constructed.

While much of the entry level exercises used generic example data, the students were also able to practice using Landsat 8, Sentinel-2 and Sentinel-1 SAR data over areas of Malaysia. This quickly demonstrated the potential for a number of applications within EASOS.

Johnnie is looking forward to going back later this year, in time to support the user testing phase and to provide more in depth training for specific applications.

Find out more about the EASOS project here. To discover how our software and expertise in these applications can help you, contact our team at enquiries@sterlinggeo.com



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