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MCEER Co-sponsors Workshop on the Application of Remote Sensing Technologies for Disaster Response

image of Bourmedes, Algeria before the earthquake Image of Bourmedes after the quake, with damage visible

Before (left) and After (right) pan-sharpened Quickbird images of the Bourmedes, Algeria earthquake of May 2003 showing building damage.

On September 12, 2003, 15 leading experts in the field of remote sensing technologies met to discuss its use in and application for improved disaster response. Specific topics included the following:

The format was a mix of presentations by the participants and discussion sessions focused on a particular aspect of remote sensing technologies, such as post-earthquake reconnaissance, and identifying important research needs.

Workshop participants pose outside for a picture

Participants pose for a group picture.

As a result of the workshop, the participants agreed to form an Ad Hoc Committee to outline how remote sensing technologies can help in post-earthquake reconnaissance field activities, damage detection for large regions, and quantifying or characterizing exposure or vulnerability of large mega cities or areas (international focus). This committee could be under the auspices of EERI and its information technology committee.

A second workshop is planned for a year from now, to continue the efforts and activities begun this year to develop, improve, adapt and implement remote sensing technologies for post-disaster response.

Hosted by the University of California, Irvine (UCI), and held at the Beckman Center of the National Academies, the workshop was sponsored by EERI, MCEER, UCI and the U.S. DOT, Research and Special Programs Administration (RSPA). Ron Eguchi, ImageCat, Inc. and M. Shinozuka, UCI, organized the workshop.

Contact Ron Eguchi,, for additional information about the workshop.


The Bulletin is a free publication offering articles on Center research, cooperative ventures, reports from conferences, educational activities, upcoming events, and reviews of new MCEER publications Spring 2004

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