Virtual India’s Bhuvan

Bhuvan, India’s mapping application website has been launched.

Working on similar grounds as Google Earth and Wikimapia, Bhuvan is a geoportal that provides medium to high resolution satellite imagery of virtually the entire India.

When compared to the rest, this web-based 3D mapping tool, which is a product of Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) is said to have better zooming properties.

“This would provide a user with images having resolution up to 10 metres. The degree of resolution showcased is based on the points of interest and popularity, but most of the Indian terrain is covered up to at least 5.8 metres of resolution with the least spatial resolution being 55 metres.”

It is also said that “the user can also navigate through 3D viewing environment. One can “fly” to destinations of choice and even draw 3D objects such as placing of expressive 3D models, 3D polygons and boxes. The site also offers tools to measure horizontal, vertical and aerial distances.”

The images on the site are a combination of satellite imagery from various IRS sensors taken “sometime within the last three years during different seasons.”

But to browse the website, one has to create an account and download “the Bhuvan Plug-in”.

A few days old into the World Wide Web, Bhuvan has a long way to go. As a common man we can hope that it would be a rich and useful source in addressing very local problems including water issues and infrastructure development.

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