Rapid Geospatial Reporting

Credit: U.S. Air Force, photo by Tech. Sgt. James L. Harper
Credit: US Air Force
Credit: UNCHR

Rapid Geospatial Reporting

Within the G-MOSAIC Project, the Rapid Geospatial Reporting (RGR) Service will provide users with relevant information in the context of a crisis. The service is oriented towards rapid response in the event of crises. RGR’s products include both basic cartography information and the analysis of layers. In order to improve the timeliness of responses, the service products are predefined with the intention of covering possible needs in the context of a crisis activation. Nevertheless, as seen in the recent experiences of the earthquakes of Haiti (January 12th, 2010) and Chile (February 27th, 2010), the products can also be tailored during the requested time to meet users’ requirements once the crisis is ongoing, focusing on new necessities that might arise.


Core products


Reference Maps and Basic Cartography representing the situation of an area after the impact of a crisis.




Trafficability Analysis providing information that affects on-road and off-road ground vehicle mobility




Rapid Damage Assessment Analysis providing timely analysis about the spatial distribution and degree of damaged assets and infrastructures.




Intelligence Reporting explaining clearly the results of the image analysis




Radar Analysis proving data in cases where cloud cover makes it difficult or impossible to aquire optical imagery




Land Cover providing information about the land use of the area



Reference maps and basic cartography

This product represents the situation of an area after the impact of a crisis. Within the first 48h after the receipt of satellite images, the end users receive a complete set of geographical information. A cartographic output of the pre-event moment can also be produced if requested. This pre-event product is delivered within the first 12h as it based on archive imagery. Information is both manually extracted from imagery and also obtained from ancillary data.


Trafficability analysis

This service aims to provide information that affects on-road and off-road ground vehicle mobility. For this reason, it is of the utmost importance for logistics deployment in a hazardous area. This product is based on both terrain elevation and land cover information as well as visual analysis when it is needed. It also takes into consideration the information extracted from the previous point, as road networks are also considered. This analysis is performed semi-automatically and with the intention of matching a very tight deadline. The information is both discrete (for the road network) and continuous (for the off-road terrain).


Rapid Damage Assessment Analysis

This service aims at providing timely analysis of the spatial distribution and degree of damaged assets and infrastructures. The product offers a qualitative estimation of the damages caused after the crisis. The information is provided in GIS format and graphically represented as maps. This product can be tailored to user needs, adapting methodologies and product representation to the specifics of the scenario. Because the distribution of damage varies depending on the event causing it, neither the methodology nor the representation should be the same from one event to another. Automatic Change Detection analysis is performed on both pre- and post-event imagery. The Haiti activation has proven that this analysis is a useful tool to identify, in a fast and easy-to-grasp overview, the spatial distribution and intensity of the modifications and changes occurred in the area of interest, interpreted as “damaged” in this case.

An example of this type of analysis is shown on the Crisis Management and Assessment page.


Intelligence Reporting

Almost all information has a spatial component, but it is also true that not all the information can be expressed through a map. The RGR service provides a geospatial report, not a collection of maps. If the nature of the information requires it, this service provides the user with detailed briefing notes, explaining clearly the results of the image analysis. These intelligence reports are produced mainly when detailed analysis of particular infrastructure is needed. For example, it could mention the level of damage of an airport to determine its usability, or the status of other critical infrastructures. In fact, this service has the capability of activating other services in G-MOSAIC that have the specific task of analysing critical infrastructures if required.



Radar Analysis

The value added by radar imagery is that radar frequencies can go through clouds making it possible to acquire imagery regardless of the weather conditions. During the Chile activation, radar imagery played a key role because adverse weather conditions made optical imagery unavailable until one week after the earthquake. With radar imagery several types of analysis can be performed. If data procurement allows and the passage time of satellites fits the date of the event, automatic change detection can be applied. This is a very useful technique to detect major changes that could be caused by major events such as earthquakes or floods.


In addition, radar imagery can be used to perform manual analysis of the damage extent. Comparing pre- and post-event radar images, and with the support of an optical image, an analyst can accurately report even small damages that could not be detected otherwise. Radar expertise is undeniably necessary for a rapid response service such as RGR, because it allows for generating information at any time.


Land Cover

The RGR Service includes information about the land use of the area. This service aims at providing continuous information about the land use of an area. Remote sensing data is used to obtain a classified image applying automatic classification methods. This comprehensive information will help the user to know which type of soil coverage and uses will be found at any given point in the area of interest.

This information is delivered to the user both as is, and also integrated into the other products of the service, enhancing the overall quality of data. This information is also used in the trafficability products, so it is a final product in itself and an input product for cartographic production and for analysis.


Service coordination


This pilot service is coordinated by the European Union Satellite Centre (EUSC) with the efforts of other partners inside the G-MOSAIC project: Astrium Geo-Information Services, e-Geos (Italy), the Salzburg University (Austria), GMV Aerospace and Defence (Spain) and INDRA (Spain).


Click the link below to download the brochure for the service Rapid Geospatial Reporting.

Rapid Geospatial Reporting