FormoSat-5 will help speed disaster prevention and relief: expert

2017/08/24 21:38:01 fontsize-small fontsize-default fontsize-big
FormoSat-5 will help speed disaster prevention and relief: expert

Taipei, Aug. 24 (CNA) The high-resolution images taken by FormoSat-5, Taiwan's first domestically developed satellite, will help to expedite disaster prevention and relief, a meteorologist said Thursday.

Cheng Chia-ping (程家平), the head of the Central Weather Bureau's Weather Information Center, said FormoSat-5 is like a giant digital camera that can photograph the Earth from space and send back clear images of the planet's surface.

It can record changes before and after an earthquake or a typhoon, relaying images of events such as flooding, landslides and mudslides, which will allow faster and better informed disaster prevention and response, Cheng said.

However, while the images can be used to help establish a weather database, they cannot be used for weather forecasting, he said, noting that FormoSat-5 is an optical remote sensing satellite, not a weather satellite.

The 450kg satellite, which is scheduled to be launched Aug. 24 U.S. time, took six years to be developed, at a cost of NT$5.7 billion (US$191.52 million).

FormoSat-5 carries an optical remote sensing payload and a science payload to execute remote sensing missions and perform science research, respectively, according to Taiwan's National Space Organization (NSPO), which led the design and development of the satellite.

It will replace FormoSat-2, providing 2-meter panchromatic and 4-meter multispectral resolution images for a wide range of applications, NSPO said.

(By Chen Wei-ting and Evelyn Kao)

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