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Tom De Groeve, & Patrick Riva. (2009). Early flood detection and mapping for humanitarian response. In S. J. J. Landgren (Ed.), ISCRAM 2009 – 6th International Conference on Information Systems for Crisis Response and Management: Boundary Spanning Initiatives and New Perspectives. Gothenburg: Information Systems for Crisis Response and Management, ISCRAM.
Abstract: Space-based river monitoring can provide a systematic, timely and impartial way to detect floods of humanitarian concern. This paper presents a new processing method for such data, resulting in daily flood magnitude time series for any arbitrary observation point on Earth, with lag times as short as 4h. Compared with previous work, this method uses image processing techniques and reduces the time to obtain a 6 year time series for an observation site from months to minutes, with more accurate results and global coverage. This results in a daily update of major floods in the world, with an objective measure for their magnitude, useful for early humanitarian response. Because of its full coverage, the grid-based technique also allows the automatic creation of low-resolution flood maps only hours after the satellite passes, independent of cloud coverage.