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Riled Up is a journal of science, the environment, exploration, new technology, and related commentary.  Contributors include scientists, explorers, engineers, and others who provide perspectives and context not typically offered in general news circulation.  For interested readers, additional resources are included.

The Conservation Alliance

3D Maps

3D Maps

Turing 2D data into 3D for maps  (credit: Vricon)

A myriad of Earth monitoring satellites constantly gather photographic, landscape, and environmental measurements. With all this new 'big data', it is not surprising maps in 3-dimensions maps have appeared.

A joint venture company (Vricon) created by the Swedish car maker Saab and DigitalGlobe, Inc. is taking this information to create maps for a persons specific area of interest. The Company's technology can utilize all available satellite imagery along with other remote sensing sensors because the data does not need to be captured as traditional stereo pairs. Building a 3D landscape is automatic and highly efficient. Thousands of square kilometers of precision data can be updated quickly with photo-realistic textures added to create the 3D geometric maps.

The current uses already include: military intelligence; monitoring coastal sea level rise for building community resilience; maps for environmental conservation protections; and city planning designs with new transportation networks. The applications of 3D maps are limited only by the imagination. A video illustrates the early results well. WHB

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