?Bhuvan, which means Earth in Sanskrit, is a satellite mapping tool from Indian
Space Research Organization (ISRO) that offers resolution of up to 5 meters and is
considered as a rival to Google Earth and Wikimapia. The new application provides a
mode to explore and discover virtual earth in 3D space with specific emphasis on
Indian region. Its prototype (beta) was launched on 12th August 2009.
The new tool is free to download and requires Windows 2000, XP/Vista and can be
downloaded from http://bhuvan.nrsc.gov.in/
Bhuvan goes one step ahead from its rival as it give you an easy way to experience,
explore and visualize IRS images over Indian region. The application allows users to
zoom far more closely than the aerial view from an aeroplane. It uses images taken
over a year by ISRO's seven remote sensing satellites, including Cartosat-1 and
Basic features of Bhuvan:
1. With the new application, users can access, explore and visualize 2D and 3D image
data along with complete information on natural resources.
2. People can visualize multi-resolution, multi-sensor, multi-temporal image data and
also superpose administrative boundaries of choice on images as required.
3. User can obtain AWS (Automatic Weather Stations) data in a graphical pattern and
also able fly to selected locations, which means you can navigate freely using the
mouse or keyboard.
4. The application features various navigation controls for example Heads-Up Display
(HUD), Tilt slider, north indicator, opacity, compass ring, zoom slider. It supports
navigation via 3D view Pop-up menu.
5. With the help of Bhuvan, a person can draw 2D and 3D objects on the application
and further he can create its snapshot for later references. It also provides various
measurement tools like horizontal distance, aerial distance, vertical distance, measure
6. The new tool has some special features like shadow analysis, which uses the Sun's
position at a given time creating shadows and effects the lighting on the terrain. ISRO
announced that the application will have more value added functions and facilities
which will be added into the package from time to time.
Future Additions in the Application:
The motto of the institute and the department of space would be to provide such
functionalities to common man so that he adopts participatory approach with
scientists to solve simple problems easily and interactively. In future versions, we can
see some of the advanced functionalities like:
? Urban Design Tools for infrastructure settings
? Contour map to distinguish different terrains
? Terrain profile for minute details
? Draw tools for urban designs
? Navigation map to view exact locations in the 3D India
Bhuvan: Fulfilling India's ambition
Bhuvan, which is based on TerraExplorer software a product of Skyline Software
Systems, is an ambitious initiative to showcase India's distinctiveness of Indian
imaging capabilities to provide vital information for common man with a focus on
Indian region. ISRO is utilizing the benefits of India's Remote Sensing satellite
system, which has currently 9 operational satellites in orbit - IRS-1D, TES,
Oceansat-1, Resourcesat-1, CARTOSAT-1/2/2A, IMS-1 and RISAT-2. Also, with new
additions in the space, the Indian EO system is expected to provide new products and
services enabling applications in several areas spanning from cartography to climate.