EarthData Awarded $4.3-million Contract for Radar Mapping in South America

Company’s radar mapping system uniquely qualified to map region

Frederick, MD (October 31, 2006) – EarthData International (EarthData) today announced the award of a $4.3 million contract from the National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency (NGA) to map portions of one of South America’s largest countries using the GeoSAR radar mapping system. GeoSAR, owned and operated exclusively by EarthData, will produce high-resolution image and terrain maps to support a variety of land and information management activities. 

Mounted on a jet aircraft and using two radar bands (X- and P-bands) simultaneously, the GeoSAR system will fly over the area and collect extremely accurate images and three-dimensional models of the forest canopy surface as well as the terrain beneath the canopy. “GeoSAR is the only existing system that can map through trees and clouds, which makes it exceptionally valuable for mapping regions such as this where dense vegetation and perennial cloud cover make conventional mapping techniques impossible or cost-prohibitive,” explained EarthData CEO Anne Hale Miglarese. Miglarese added that EarthData is pleased to continue its long and successful relationship with NGA, a partner in the GeoSAR system’s development over the past 7 years.

Throughout its history, EarthData has led the mapping industry in developing, adapting and commercializing emerging technologies specifically for mapping purposes. GeoSAR, with its one-of-a-kind foliage and cloud-penetrating P-band capability, is the company’s latest innovation. In addition to this project in South America, EarthData’s GeoSAR system is currently deployed in Papua New Guinea and other parts of the Asia Pacific region.

About EarthData International
EarthData provides a full range of mapping and GIS services to support customers’ needs in a wide variety of natural resource management, urban planning, economic development, national defense, and engineering activities. With its fleet of aircraft, the organization collects aerial photography, uses airborne laser (lidar) and imaging radar (GeoSAR) systems to produce 3D terrain models, and develops or deploys other remote sensing technologies to detect thermal and multispectral information about the earth’s surface. EarthData offices in the United States, Canada, and China use this data to create and supply photogrammetric, lidar, radar, and digital orthophoto mapping and GIS applications and services, worldwide.  (

About GeoSAR Radar Mapping
GeoSAR is the world’s only airborne radar mapping system that collects dual-band interferometric synthetic aperture radar (IFSAR) data in a single pass, day or night and in almost any weather condition. By acquiring X-band (top surface) and P-band (foliage penetration) IFSAR data simultaneously from each side of the aircraft in a single pass, GeoSAR offers unmatched data quality and detail.  EarthData GeoSAR customers receive a suite of five standard products—a top surface image and elevation model, a corresponding image and terrain model beneath the trees, and a series of laser profiles for every flight line—as well as customized products, if desired, with no license or usage restrictions. Customers use GeoSAR map products in a variety of applications including topographic mapping, 3D visualization, oil & gas exploration, corridor mapping, flood modeling, wetlands mapping, forestry, and archeology.