OpenIR is an ICT (information communication technology) that maps the environmental risks and features, which are revealed by infrared satellite data. This includes algorithms for flood risk map generations and a web map application. OpenIR’s initial validation case will take place in Indonesia. At the same time, OpenIR collaborates with FEMA (Federal Emergency Management Agency) to determine additional validation and use case scenarios. OpenIR also works towards interfacing flood risk maps with crowd maps and allow global access to this data.
OpenIR’s initial component is a geo-server system that serves visible and infrared spectrum data into web map layers. Currently, the team runs tests on processing and serving data in-house and/or using data from Google’s Earth Engine that will soon be available.
The team created a prototype of a Risk Map Builder, which automatically generates a flood risk map for any given area. The goal is to expand the resolution based on additional inputs. OpenIR exists as a prototype that is currently undergoing user testing and data validation.
Since the tsunami in 2004, Indonesia has strengthened its crisis response systems. However, as a recent Jakarta Globe article points out, preparedness systems are still underdeveloped. At the same time, increasingly severe weather phenomena worldwide make access to standardized risk maps more important than ever. Digital Maps using infrared satellite data are a powerful way to protect land, the ecosystem and its inhabitants. It is important for the software to be made available to users in developing countries, which are more environmentally and ecologically vulnerable. This could contribute to an environmental visualization system in even deeper and detailed ways.
OpenIR’s work with the Indonesian government, universities and NGOs through community partners, will help all parties to better understand how a standardized environmental mapping system with easily comprehensible risk maps can be used for planning and prevention. OpenIR's initial focus is on Indonesia, a country at the intersection of economic and environmental vulnerability. However, as OpenIR expands its production of risk maps to a global reach, more regions can benefit. OpenIR’s Flood Risk Map will function as a resource for goverments, universities and NGOs, but the web map format will also allow individual citizens to receive crucial information. Maps are a powerful way for all kinds of groups to protect their land and ecosystems. With this in mind, OpenIR can ultimately help developed and under-developed economic regions, as well as, ecologically vulnerable regions, to save millions of dollars.
The prize money would be used to continue the OpenIR research and development for OpenIR’s Flood Risk Map technology and alternative implementation (for example, de-forestation monitoring, crop yield estimation etc.) It would cover research & development expenses, partnership development, travel and material expenses including digital assets, such as unique commercial grade satellite images, etc. Additional funds will be used to ensure the sustainability of OpenIR’s work.
Setting: OpenIR is set up on an MIT Media Lab 300 GB virtual machine, www.openir.media.mit.edu
Initial component: Geo-server system, which feeds visible and infrared spectrum data into web map layers
Data use for algorithm: Surface_reflectance, radiance, toa, mcd43a4, USGS, SRTM product lines et al.
Organization: The DuKode Studio - USA
Contact: Arlene Ducao