Planet Satellite Images

According to Andrew Zolli, (2015, April), the devastating 7.8 magnitude earthquake in Nepal of took on a multi-humanitarian effort from the community. The digital community responded around the world with satellite imagery, UAV/UAS (drones), and images of post-disaster images. The following story from (Zolli, 2015, April):

The devastating 7.8 magnitude earthquake that struck late Saturday evening in Nepal is a disaster of the first order, and our hearts break for the thousands of people whose lives have been lost, hurt and deeply disrupted. The tragedy is still unfolding, and timely information and targeted support is urgently needed to ensure that the response is as effective as possible.

The digital humanitarian community has been robustly engaged, and many organizations around the world are contributing data and talent to assist on-the-ground efforts. Facebook has activated its Safety Check service, and Google has done the same with its Person Finder feature, both of which help connect people inside and outside of the affected areas. DigitalGlobe, through its Tomnod effort, has made post-disaster images of Kathmandu available; Mapbox has processed this imagery and provided it to Humanitarian OpenStreetMap.

On the ground, the team at Kathmandu Living Labs is busily coordinating the OpenStreetMap volunteers in getting accurate, timely and mobile-friendly maps and information to first responders.

Many others in the crisis mapping community are also hard at work, including CrisisMappers and Ushahidi (which has a great post on how to support online volunteer response). Governments are participating, too – India, for example, is sending UAVs to help map the destruction.

What Voracity Space is Doing

Voracity Space imagery and services are still evolving, over the past few years in collaboration with universities and companies. We have invested in the capability of imagery capture from Internet of Things (IoT) devices and currently applying areas of this technology into CubeSats to meet future needs such as the Nepal, Kathmandu crisis.


Zolli, A. (2015, April). Responding to the Nepal Earthquake.