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Satellite Image Captures Rebuild of an Oil Refinery, Four Years on from Japan Earthquake

Images from UK-DMC2 show the oil refinery in the Miyagi prefecture immediately after the tsunami struck (top), and again four years later (bottom).
UK-DMC2 image. DMCii 2015, all rights reserved. Click to enlarge.

At the top is a satellite image from UK-DMC2, acquired two days after the tsunami struck the oil refinery in the Miyagi prefecture in North Eastern Japan. The earthquake, which struck on March 11, 2011, was recorded as a magnitude-9.0 tremor, and official reports noted that the tsunami waves reached heights of 40 m and rushed nearly 10 km inland in some areas. You can see the plume of smoke from the main refinery in the top right area of the image. The fire raged for four days before it was brought under control. You can also see breaches in the sea defenses at the bottom middle of the image, where the sea water surged through and flooded the low-lying areas beyond the sea wall. 

The second image is a revisit of the same area four years later, after extensive re-building has taken place. 

The satellite images were taken by Surrey’s UK-DMC2 satellite, which carries a 22 m multispectral imager. The wide area imager is particularly useful for disaster relief planning and assessment as it provides a single image of a large area, and allows examination of large infrastructure, transportation networks, and coastline. Satellite images are also used as references to measure the extent of flooding and other damage, and this data can be used in planning rebuilding, with appropriate new defenses and superstructures. 

Images from UK-DMC2 are made available through image provider DMCii, which supplies satellite imagery products and services to a wide range of international customers from a unique constellation of satellites for agriculture, forestry mapping, disaster monitoring, and many more markets. The example above is the raw image data from UK-DMC2, which is split into the three spectral bands (near-infrared, red and green) with radiometric calibration on all bands. 

DMCii supplies satellite images to the International Disasters Charter.


18 June 20150 Comments1 Comment

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