Wednesday, June 16, 2010

South Dakota site vital to international satellite tracking of Gulf oil spill

Near Garretson, SD, just outside of Sioux Falls, is the U.S. Geological Survey Center.

Through agreements with other countries and private industry, the site is able to access satellite images of the Gulf spill. These are used to plan responses and assess damage.

The South Dakota facility is a clearing house for resources that are not readily available together elsewhere:

"Canada uses radar which can, in effect, see through the clouds. The French provide high-resolution images. And Japanese satellites highlight different features, such as shallow water penetration."

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