From the moment a child first recognizes his or her reflection, their sense of self awareness is forever changed. So too was humanity’s when we got our first look at the planet from space. It was a life-changing event on a species-wide scale — our microcosm suddenly became extremely macro and we were able to finally see ourselves against the grander backdrop of the universe.
Last Friday May 10th marked the anniversary of the first colour pictures taken of Earth from space. Captured by the Apollo 10 crew, it marked the first time we were able to bring back images of our blue marble, in full colour.
Some days, if not most, you probably start the day by checking the weather forecast. Maybe you need to take an umbrella to go shopping. Maybe you want to see what to pack for that critical business trip overseas. Maybe you’re hoping for a massive snowstorm because that school project isn’t done. Yet.
But some day in the future — and probably the near future — you are also going to want to check what the weather will be like in space.
An ambitious effort to broadcast real-time streaming video of Earth from space is closer to reality, after a new influx of cash and some new partnerships. By spring 2013, everyone on Earth will be able to watch the planet from the most unique vantage point ever built, the International Space Station. Read more.
If this were a movie, the incident might be called Four Days in July. The plot: A scientist at NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory in California is analyzing satellite data when he notices that most of the ice sheet that covers Greenland appears to be melting.
Monitoring conflict in Sudan’s Darfur region; observation of the drought crisis across the horn of Africa; continued evaluation of Haiti’s earthquake response. It is conflict regions like these that UrtheCast has agreed to image in support of the United Nations Institute for Training and Research (UNITAR).
UrtheCast is pleased to announce the signing of an innovative agreement with the UNITAR’s Operational Satellite Applications Programme (UNOSAT). As a part of this agreement, UrtheCast will provide Earth imagery data for the purpose of monitoring humanitarian relief efforts across the globe. This contract will fulfill a key piece of UrtheCast’s vision – a vision that involves leveraging data from the world’s first high-definition (HD) video of Earth from the International Space Station (ISS). Read more.
This article originally appeared in the Globe and Mail on Monday, July 16th, 2012
By SEAN SILCOFF,Globe and Mail
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Urthecast has contracted the U.K.’s government-owned Rutherford Appleton Laboratories to build two cameras and Richmond, B.C.-based MacDonald Dettwiler and Associates Ltd. to build the associated hardware. The equipment is expected to be delivered later this year. Read more.
At a little past 3:40 a.m. EST on March 22nd, rocket engines roared to life and history was made once again at the famed launchpad of the Cape Canaveral Airforce Station. For the first time a spacecraft, the Dragon, built by private company SpaceX, was launched on a journey to the International Space Station (ISS). Read more.