Polar ice caps
The US National Snow & Ice Data Center (NSIDC) has recently updated their KML files of Arctic and Antarctic ice to include 2014 data. We have looked at their work many times in the past, as you can see here. Also of note is this press release from them explaining that the Arctic sea ice extent is shrinking and the Antarctic sea ice extent is growing. They also indicate this is the 6th lowest amount of ice recorded since they began measurements. Keep in mind that this is minimum and maximum extent of sea ice as measured by satellite and not thickness or total volume.
What interested me most about the animations showing the historical record is how the maximum extent of sea ice seems to be a very different shape each year.
Arctic sea ice extent, September 2014. The pink line is the monthly median sea ice extent 1981-2010
Poachers tracked down with Google Earth
There was an interesting story on Mongabay.com about how a poachers’ camp was identified using the imagery in Google Earth.
The ‘machamba’ (small farm with a few huts) shown in the article.
The interesting part of the story from a Google Earth perspective is that the imagery used was from July 2013 and July 2012, yet it was still useful in tracking down active poachers in 2014. To see the location in Google Earth download this KML
World’s first space detective agency launched.
See the full article here.
Because satellite imagery is being used in court cases more and more frequently, Raymond Harris and Raymond Purdy have launched the world’s first space detective agency. They will specialize in finding and obtaining appropriate satellite imagery for legal cases as well as ensuring that the acquisition and subsequent handling of imagery meets the standards required by courts.