Category Archives: techadvisory

Uganda QGIS and remote sensing workshop

qgisThis week I had the privilege of coordinating a workshop on QGIS and remote sensing in Kampala, Uganda. Our trainers were Thomas Ballatore and Shane Bradt. We were very pleased with their walkthroughs and presentations of crucial software and plugins. The training is part of the Norwegian Oil for Development Program.

The focus was of course QGIS. But to be hones BEAM Visat was a real eye-opener. Yes, I have been introduced to the software while working in an expert group on satellite imagery. We earlier this year concluded a report for the Norwegian Space Centre where BEAM Visat was mentioned as one of several crucial components for handling remote sensing data. But – the workshop provided an applied context which gave me a whole new perspective to both software and methods.

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Converting shapefiles to Mission Planner .poly-files

15-9-plannedMission Planner by Michael Oborne is an impressive piece of software. It is used to program the open-source APM autopilot. The autopilot is used to control planes, copters and rovers. I have used Mission Planner a lot and I can not do without.

Some years ago I started making a map for the Mindland island in the archipelago of Norway using a GPS, OpenStreetMap and Bing aerial imagery. The main driver for this project was to document old place names. With the drones becoming somewhat of a hobby last year I thought it would be nice to also establish a proper open license ortophoto for the island. Mission planner has what it takes to approach such a task in a structured manner, save for one thing. The polygon tool only imports .poly-files.

When working with maps some of us tend to stick with shapefiles or geodatabases. I have made a small script which allows for the conversion of a shapefile with a geographic coordinate system (wgs84) to as many .poly files as there are objects in the shapefile. Adding the functionality to Mission Planner has been indicated as possible, but has yet to materialise. So until then the script associated with this posting remains relevant. Continue reading

Processing Sentinel 2 satellite imagery in Norway

ANB-11-05_frontpage_shadowThe second report on “Preparations for acquisition and application of optical satellite data for Norway Digital” (Gjertsen et al) written for the Norwegian Space Agency has now been published.

This report is a continuation of the work presented in the report “Preparations for acquisition and application of optical satellite data for Norway Digital” (Trollvik et al., 2012). The main goal has been to specify the requirements for a national satellite data centre for optical satellite data from the Sentinel-2 and Landsat series Earth observation satellites. The main objective of a national satellite data centre is to facilitate easy access to and use of Sentinel-2 and Landsat 8 data for Norwegian users. Continue reading

QDGC shapefiles available for national and continental scale distribution

Aqdgc_logo new set of the Quarter Degree Grid Cell shapefiles has been generated. The update is global and delivers an error fix for the country level files as well as a new product – continent level files.

The QDGC shapefiles contain center lon/lat coordinates and the QDGC string for the different squares. The files are offered down to level four. For a country around the equator level four covers around 45 square kilometers with length and height a little under seven kilometres.

Read more about the use of QDGC on this page:

The calculations/export  this time took around 60 hours computer pricessing time including generation of world fishnet with the different sizes, square area calculations, assigning QDGC strings, compression and more. Continue reading

Rekreasjonsorientert bruk av droner – 2

Quadcopter etter en litt hard landing.

Arm på quadkopter etter en litt for hard landing

OBS: Artikkelen nedenfor er nå et par år gammel. Nye lover og forskrifte han ha blitt vedtatt. Teknologien beveger seg også videre.I en tidligere posting beskrev jeg om de juridiske rammene som omfatter privat bruk av et quadkopter (drone). I denne postingen vil jeg se litt på erfaringer gjort etter om lag 20 flyvninger med et quadcopter på en avsidesliggende gård på Mindland – en øy på Helgelandskysten.

Jeg vil belyse to av de viktigste forholdene rundt utprøvingen av quadcopteret. Det er riktig å starte med sikkerhet. Deretter vil jeg se på tekniske forhold rundt denne utprøvingen.
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Online in Timor Leste – update

logoI have now been three times in Timor Lestewithin a year. My first time was 14 days in September 2011. My only regret from that trip was not being able to use a local sim-card in my iPhone. Cards were bought, contacts with Timor Telecom were made, numerous efforts made – but in the end of the day I failed miserably. Turned out my cellphone provider back home in Norway had not unlocked my phone.

Last time, in March, I had decided enough was enough. I wanted to get on line in Timor Leste, but it took some efforts to get through with what was the plan. I am now here for a third time. With past experiences it took me less than an hour from landing at the airport until I had a new micro-sim-card in my iPhone.

This is an update of an article first posted feb 29th, 2012 @11:26 Continue reading