Boeing [NYSE:BA] has received $9.2 million in follow-on orders from the National Imagery and Mapping Agency (NIMA) to produce a digital topographic model of the Earth from radar data collected by the space shuttle Endeavour.
This award to Boeing under NIMA's Shuttle Radar Topography Mission (SRTM) program brings the total contract award to over $19 million. Boeing is one of two prime contractors involved in the SRTM program, and is responsible for the overall project management of its team and development of the interactive editing system interface and editing software that is being used to produce the data at Boeing.
To date, the team has produced over 3,000 cells of radar data over portions of four continents with each cell being one degree of latitude by one degree of longitude in size. Boeing's SoftPlotter®, a software program that processes terrain data derived from aerial and satellite imagery, is the production foundation for the software developed and in use by the Boeing team.
"The development of a worldwide terrain elevation database from SRTM data represents the first single, accurate and time synchronous source of worldwide survey data," said John Werle, general manager of Boeing's Space and Intelligence Systems Washington Operations. "This data is being made available to the public and will no doubt generate many innovative and as yet undefined capabilities that will change our lives. We are honored to be a key player in this effort and are committed to the future of geospatial technologies and the development of a highly accurate digital model of the earth."
The SRTM mission flew on NASA's space shuttle Endeavour in February 2000. The data collected are the most detailed and accurate height measurements ever gathered for this large an area. The goal of the SRTM production system is to produce digital topographic data for 80% of the Earth's land surface. Automation of most tasks has reduced editing time and minimized production costs, as compared to previous systems for producing similar data.
Boeing Integrated Defense Systems is one of the world's largest space and defense businesses. Headquartered in St. Louis, IDS is a $25 billion business. It provides systems solutions to its global military, government and commercial customers. It is a leading provider of intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance; the world's largest military aircraft manufacturer; the world's largest satellite manufacturer and a leading provider of space-based communications; the primary systems integrator for U.S. missile defense; NASA's largest contractor; and a global leader in satellite launch services.