We are no longer in the era of locating places on Earth with a piece of paper map. The quantitative revolution in Geography has brought about distinct advancements in this field. Geomatics is an emerging sub-field in Geography, which applies traditional spatial and cartographic techniques to computer-based applications, such as GIS (Geographic Information System), RS (Remote Sensing), GPS (Global Positioning System), etc. GIS is a system that deals with the storage of spatial information for automatic retrieval by computer. Nearly all map-making is done with the help of computer-assisted GIS software. Remote Sensing deals with obtaining geographic information through measurements made from a certain distance. This remotely sensed information may be in the form of aerial photograph or satellite imagery. GPS is a satellite information system giving information about location and time to a user in all weather conditions.
Development of these techniques has proved immensely beneficial to mankind. GIS, now-a-days, is widely applied from road networking to natural resource management. You can quickly prepare an open street map with the help of GIS. If you need to identify the exact location and time of that place, GPS will serve the purpose.
Remote sensing has wide applications in hazard assessment, environmental monitoring, land degradation and crop ecology. The Northern Research Institute Alta, Norway has launched an Unmanned Aerial System for research on Remote Sensing and cryospheric measurements. Drones are very good examples of unmanned aerial vehicles used for military and other civil operation services.
Written by: Ritwika Mukherji
Edits by: Team at UPP