One of the main systems for disaster management and storm prediction is a satellite, which is a crucial technology for saving numerous lives in emergency situations like the Kerala floods.
Five satellites of the Indian Space Organisation played a major role in monitoring the flood situation and aiding in relief work–Oceansat-2, RESOURCESAT-2, CARTOSAT-2 and 2A and INSAT 3DR. They have been gathering data and are sending real-time images to the ground station, reported The Times Of India.
The data sent back is helping in monitoring the flood situation and in the planning of rescue operations in flood-affected areas.
“We are using the data from these satellites to provide alerts on flooding, areas of inundation, during and after rain, and weather forecasts,” an official told the publication.
For example, the INSAT 3DR, an advanced meteorological satellite, provides the latest information in fluctuating temperatures and humidity in the coast of Kerala, while the CARTOSAT and RESOURCESAT are sending high-resolution images of the affected areas to study and provide relief funds accordingly.
Once the satellite sends back images, they are marked down on a map with flooded and non-flooded regions highlighted. This map is then sent out to state and central agencies which can help in plotting the transport network and relief operations.
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Data from the satellites are then processed by the Decision Support Centre (DSC) at the National Remote Sensing Centre (NRSC) in Hyderabad.
Along with the satellites, the use of other instruments like buoys and barometers is contributing to the Kerala rescue operations.
Barometers measure atmospheric pressure and help us forecast any short-term changes in the weather. Buoys, on the other hand, have sensors which give us information like wind speed, wave direction, and height of the sea level. According to the report by the publication, six of the buoys in the Arabian Sea are located at depths of 25-35 m. Two of those buoys are off the coast of Kozhikode and Kollam.
In a disaster like this, planning is of the utmost priority, in order for the relief operations to be effective.
Although the floods in Kerala are reported to be receding, the forecast predicts rainfall in Kozhikode, Kannur and Idduki districts. Nearly 9 lakh people are now lodged in shelter camps in Kerala, and the government is working to ensure relief to affected persons.
(Edited by Shruti Singhal)
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