REAL (Rural Education and Action for Liberation), a non-profit organisation formed in 1978.Now we are taking an initiative to educate, enhance and develop the rural India through a platform called “Geospatial Open Portal 4 India” (GOPI). GOPI is nothing but an online portal which aims at collaborating all the open-access Remote sensing and GIS (Geographical Information System) data and information products for India.
The portal provides interactive visualisation map that explains the data in a simple and effective way which can be understand by the common people. It will enable educators, planners, decision makers and the public to utilise the geospatial data more effectively and utilise it to the maximum potential. This will be useful mainly for decision makers and common people to explore and know about their arena through proven scientific way.
The first phase of the project will focus on the live / near real time remote sensing / GIS data provided by various organisations. The Data Management System, which provides the tools and capabilities for an automated process for visualising data online. This will be visualised and interpreted online through an interactive map. During our first phase, the primary focus is on the air quality, Agricultural, temperature and rainfall related data. Thus by utilising the modern advancements of geospatial technologies and open data availability, we are creating a portal which enable all the users to uplift their knowledge.
Air pollutants concentration in the air that we breathe is referred as “Air Quality”. clean, clear and unpolluted air is said to be good in quality. Clean air is essential to lead and maintain the delicate balance of life on earth. Air pollutants can be life threatening to human health if concentrations raised above a certain level, substantially for people who are sensitive to air pollution, such as the elderly, individual with respiratory illnesses and young children, or are exposed to pollutants for extended periods. To reduce risks, people need to know when pollutants are present and in what concentrations. Air Quality maps are retrieved from all available in-field stations and satellite images. Satellite images will provide the air quality throughout India where in-field stations are limited to that particular stations only. In field data is accurate than the satellite data but can’t get the spatial spread throughout India without losing the level of accuracy. Arguably both have their advantages, we think to combine and visualise both to increase the accuracy and availability.
Agriculture data is retrieved via earth observation satellites like AVHRR (Advanced Very High Resolution Radiometer), MODIS (Moderate Imaging Resolution Spectrometer), Oceansat-2 OCM 2 (Ocean Colour Monitor), etc. are to name a few satellite’s sensors which used to obtain several application products including agriculture. NDVI (Normalised Difference Vegetation Index), VCI (Vegetation Condition Index), VHI (Vegetation Health condition Index) are the main indices that allow us to understand the agriculture health in detail. Time Series of the data from these satellites opens up monitoring purposes. Though high precision agriculture data is not freely available, we are trying our level best to provide a best output.
Climate data is the average weather in a given location or averaged over a period of time. We show the spatial variability of meteorological or oceanographic variables, such as air temperatures, precipitation, humidity, wind speed, etc.
Temperature is a degree of object’s / substance’s warmth or coldness with reference to some standard value. It do have effects on the environment (agriculture, forest, water bodies, etc.) as well as human body as it needs to be regulated to maintain the equilibrium of the ecosystem. This can be measured via in field observatory stations as well as satellite images. We are making use of both here to give the perspective of the data availability and comparability which opens up many applications. Our data shows the temperature of observatory stations and satellite images throughout india. TCI (Temperature Condition Index) is one of the popular index that minimise the noise of the satellite data and provide the variation in temperature spatially and temporally. Thus, it can be utilised in several application purposes mainly in agriculture.
Rainfall is the amount of the rain falling within a period in a given specific area limit. Technical measurements were used to quantify rain using observatory networks. On the other hand, satellite imageries are used to quantify the rain. Satellite images have accuracy when using in the perspective of spreadness of the data as it measures throughout where, observatory networks interpolates for the variability of the data. Standardised Precipitation Index (SPI) is a popular index used to quantify the rainfall by minimising the noise. Thus, it can be used in applications such as Drought monitoring, agriculture health monitoring, water monitoring, etc. (but not limited to).
Forest data includes the forest change (tree cover loss and gain data, near real time forest alerts and active fire data, etc.), Forest cover / Forest Use (Mangroves, forest landscapes, primary forests, carbon stocks, allocating forest for agriculture/ infrastructure development, etc.) and conservation and preservation data, etc.
Soil moisture is the amount of water particles that is held in the spaces between soil particles. Surface soil moisture is the water that is in the upper 10 cm of soil. It plays an important role in development of weather patterns and production of precipitation. Through remote sensing, soil moisture can be quantified and can be used for several applications.
Our next phase will aimed at all other forms of spatial open data which can be provided through interactive maps, links or downloadable format. This will definitely be the one stop portal for India to know about availability of all geospatial data. REAL will be providing additional modules in the future, and developers are encouraged to participate, provide feedback, and create new modules and capabilities.