URISA Vanguard Cabinet to Host Google Hangout

Des Plaines, IL (November 7, 2014) –  URISA’s Vanguard Cabinet (VC) is hosting a Google Hangout on Wednesday evening, November 12 at 8:00 PMEastern (7 PM Central/6 PM Mountain/5 PM Pacific) in order to give young GIS professionals an opportunity to learn more about the VC and the 2015 application process.

Individuals will be able to watch and participate in the Google Hangout via either of these links:

The URISA Vanguard Cabinet debuted in 2011 to engage young GIS practitioners (35 and under), increase their numbers in the organization, and better understand the concerns facing these future leaders of the GIS community.  The Cabinet’s mission is to collaborate with URISA’s Board of Directors and Committees in creating and promoting programs and policies of benefit to young professionals. Comprised entirely of passionate young members selected from different geospatial disciplines, the Cabinet aims to position URISA as the center of opportunities for creative young professionals who are committed to improving URISA and the geospatial profession via innovation, collaboration, networking, and professional development.

Clare Brown, GISP, advisor to the Vanguard Cabinet, notes, “Young professionals are not only increasing in number within URISA, but they are also leading and initiating important programs. From student outreach to  professional practice development, the VC is making its mark and being noticed. I encourage all young GIS professionals to learn more about the Vanguard Cabinet and apply to become a part of this great group of future leaders.”

Visit the  Vanguard Cabinet web page for the 2015 application form (due byNovember 30).

Galileo satellite set for new orbit



ESA’s fifth Galileo navigation satellite, one of two left in the wrong orbit this summer, will make a series of manoeuvres this month as a prelude to its health being confirmed. The aim is to raise the lowest point of its orbit – its perigee – to reduce the radiation exposure from the Van Allen radiation belts surrounding Earth, as well as to put it into a more useful orbit for navigation purposes.

Should the two-week operation prove successful then the sixth Galileo satellite will follow the same route. The Galileo pair, launched together on a Soyuz rocket on 22 August, ended up in an elongated orbit travelling out to 25 900 km above Earth and back down to 13 713 km. The target orbit was a purely circular one at an altitude of 23 222 km. In addition, the orbits are angled relative to the equator less than originally planned. The two satellites have only enough fuel to lift their altitude by about 4000 km – insufficient to correct their orbits entirely. But the move will take the fifth satellite into a more circular orbit than before, with a higher perigee of 17 339 km.

“The new orbit will fly over the same location every 20 days,” explains Daniel Navarro-Reyes, ESA Galileo mission analyst. “The standard Galileo repeat pattern is every 10 days, so achieving this will synchronise the ground track with the rest of the Galileo satellites. “In addition, from a user receiver point of view, the revised orbit will reduce the variation in signal levels, reduce the Doppler shift of the signal, and increase the satellite’s visibility.

“For the satellite, reducing its radiation exposure in the Van Allen radiation belts will protect it from further exposure to charged particles. “The orbit will also allow Galileo’s Earth Sensor to hold a stable direction for the satellite’s main antenna to point at Earth. “Right now, when the satellite dips to its lowest point, Earth appears so large that the sensor is unusable. The satellite relies on gyroscopes alone, degrading its attitude precision.” The recovery is being overseen from the Galileo Control Centre in Oberpfaffenhofen, Germany, with the assistance of ESA’s Space Operations Centre, ESOC, in Darmstadt, Germany.

GIS to the Rescue Meetup this Thursday


Last DC Meet Up of the Year!

  • Thursday, November 13, 2014
  • 5:00 PM to 8:00 PM
  • District Architecture Center

    421 7th St NW , Washington, DC (map)

  • Don’t miss the last chance this year to meet with your fellow geospatial technology enthusiasts. We’ll discuss how organizations are using geospatial technology to address the needs of vulnerable populations during emergencies and crises.

    Getting the right resources to the right people at right time requires coordination and an understanding of the people at the heart of the situation. With maps, organizations determine how and where they should provide food, shelter, transportation, and medical and emotional support. Maps paint a clear picture of important factors like language spoken and access to transportation so responders know how to effectively serve the public.

    Join us to learn how geospatial technology equips responders with the information they need to target and assist vulnerable people during an emergency.


    5:00 p.m. – 6:00 p.m.   

    Registration and Networking

    6:00 p.m. – 7:00 p.m.  

    Robert Shankman, GIS Program Manager, HHS ASPR, Office of Emergency Management and Alex Freiman, Epidemiologist, HHS ASPR, Office of Emergency Management

    Hear directly from the Office of the Assistant Secretary for Preparedness and Response (ASPR)- the nation’s lead agency in preventing, preparing for, and responding to the adverse health effects of public health emergencies and disasters. The Office of Emergency Management (OEM) is responsible for developing operational plans, analytical products, and training exercises to ensure the preparedness of the Office, the Department, the Federal Government and the public to respond to and recover from domestic and international public health and medical threats and emergencies.

    Also hear from an Esri Solutions Engineer!

    7:00 p.m.  – 8:00 p.m.  

    Mix and mingle a little longer