The Berlin-headquartered geospatial data and analytics marketplace UP42, which earlier this month made available very-high resolution optical imagery of the earth captured by its satellites, is looking to join hands with the government to help achieve the Indian Space Association and Gati Shakti objectives more cost-effectively.
Earth observation is about measuring and assessing the planet’s natural and man-made environments and applying derived data and insights to solve critical issues like climate change, deforestation, food security, and natural disasters among others, Sean Wiid, UP42 chief executive told PTI from Berlin.
Pleiades Neo is a constellation of four satellites, operated by the European planemaker Airbus’ defence and aerospace arm, provides 30 cm native very high resolution imagery for earth observation activities. The combination offers much faster and cheaper daily data to end-users in all sectors, most notably urban mapping, infrastructure monitoring, disaster response, insurance and agriculture.
Earlier this month, UP42 had said very high-resolution optical imagery of the earth, taken by the Airbus Pleiades Neo constellation, was available on its geospatial marketplace and developer platform. This is important as constant coverage and faster turnaround time from new constellations, including radar data, radio frequency data, and real-time, very high-resolution satellite imagery, Wiid said, adding such high frequency data will be game-changer in vegetation management or maritime monitoring.
In February 2021, the government liberalised mapping technologies to help achieve its vision of USD 5-trillion economy as advances in mapping technology have become the base for innovation and direct contribution in mission-mode projects like smart cities, highways, clean rivers, and the overall digitisation.
Given the government’s efforts to establish a collaborative geospatial ecosystem, this vast data-sets play a crucial role in helping local organisations drive social, economic and environmental impact using the earth observation data and analytics, Wiid told PTI. UP42 is cheaper as it removes technical and commercial barriers to access such insights and helps businesses build successful geospatial products as its is UP42 is a developer platform and marketplace.
UP42 being a developer platform and a marketplace it is much more affordable, and more specifically as it is a neutral one-stop shop for data and analytics–through our very simple pay-as-you-go model, wherein users buy credits upfront for a combination of data, algorithms, and infrastructure, Wiid said.
“We are an API-first platform making it actionable by automating data flow and analytics all the way through to our customers. We provide our users with a single interface for accessing and processing data on-demand via our APIs or user interfaces and customers purchase just the data needed to cover their area of interest and then leverage off-the-shelf processing capabilities to analyse data-sets without investment in their own computing infra,” Wiid told PTI.
UP42 currently offers over 150 products from over 50 of the world’s top geospatial companies available on the marketplace to solve a wide variety of uses cases: finding features, counting objects, detecting change, uncovering patterns, classifying land use, and deriving vegetative indices, he said.
On the scope for entering India, Widd said, democratising geospatial technology can be a powerful solution to some of the greatest problems that world faces today apart from helping reach the downstream economic and societal benefits to the needy.
“We recognize India’s efforts to create a collaborative ecosystem by establishing the Indian Space Association and facilitating the Gati Shakti Masterplan, which are the two critical initiatives that can spearhead the country towards an innovative technological era that can benefit both the people as well as the economy. As an active member of this ecosystem, our presence here may eventually be a natural evolution of our global expansion strategy,” Wiid said.
As we probe into this new market, we are definitively keen on establishing solid relationships with the Centre and the states, to help make a difference in the geospatial industry, he said.