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Rivista bimestrale - anno XXV - Numero 3/<strong>2021</strong> - Sped. in abb. postale 70% - Filiale di Roma<br />


GIS<br />




3D<br />


CAD<br />

BIM<br />


WEBGIS<br />

UAV<br />



LBS<br />


GNSS<br />



LiDAR<br />


May/June <strong>2021</strong> year XXV N°3<br />










Italy in the GeoInformation worldwide<br />

In this issue, traditionally released in English language every year, <strong>GEOmedia</strong> provide<br />

its readers the presentation of two international projects where Italian companies play an<br />

important role.<br />

AMPERE (Asset Mapping Platform for Emerging countRies Electrification), a project created<br />

to bring to Dominican Republic, a GNSS-based integrated platform for energy decision<br />

makers. It is finalized to the solution to one of the problems in the Central and South<br />

America countries regarding the precarious, often chaotic status of large part of the electricity<br />

distribution network, which, besides making the service unreliable and sometimes dangerous,<br />

takes away from the simple beauty of the area. The old lines are being replaced with several<br />

dedicated interventions to make areas more appealing. Moreover, the electricity distribution<br />

companies experience serious problems with electricity leakages and were losing vast amounts<br />

of resources from illegal connections to the grid. AMPERE, with the participation of the<br />

Italian company Sistematica SpA, proposes a solution based on a GIS cloud mapping<br />

technology, collecting on field data acquired with optical/thermal cameras and LIDAR installed<br />

on board to an UAV as well as other data captured with conventional sensors on ground.<br />

DeepCube is an Horizon 2020 project implemented by 9 European partners coordinated<br />

by the National Observatory of Athens. In this project the Italian company TREA Altamira<br />

(TREA) will analyze the deformation trend change detection on PSI (Persistent Scatterer<br />

Interferometry) time series for critical infrastructure monitoring using InSAR derived services.<br />

TRE has been a pioneer in developing new products from satellite SAR data, born as a<br />

Politecnico of Milan University spin-off in 2000, the company was funded to market the first<br />

PSI technique worldwide and in 2016, it merged with Altamira, an InSAR service company<br />

too. When asked to join the DeepCube project, TRE was thrilled to contribute to the challenge<br />

of exploiting the mass amount of Sentinel-1 SAR data combined with in-situ geodetic and<br />

other measurements with the final goal of creating a commercial service to monitor critical<br />

infrastructure at large scales.<br />

Another important contribution is coming from the Italian Register of Territorial Data<br />

(RNDT) talking about the Data Discoverability. This is described as one of the main<br />

tasks, next to availability and interoperability, that public policy makers and implementers<br />

should take into due consideration in order to foster access, use and re-use of public sector<br />

information, particularly in case of Open Data.<br />

An overview on the Team of HERE Technologies working on modern map-making and<br />

maintenance that requires the normalization and conflation of combined datasets from many<br />

different sources and channels. The Local Data Intelligence Team (known as LDI team) is<br />

a global team, with geo spatial experts in each region. Different cultures and local knowledge<br />

allow for a rainbow of expertise in this team. Although they are local, they state to contribute<br />

toward global solutions.<br />

Finally an interview to Kevin Dowling , CEO of Kaarta will bring us a new vision of actual<br />

modern cartography. Kevin explain us that the name ‘Kaarta’ is a phonetic reference to the<br />

science or practice of map making in cartography. The name captures the company’s pioneering<br />

on mapping to produce 3D models in real time, and it is not about the technique used, but it’s<br />

about the problems solved.<br />

Enjoy your reading,<br />

Renzo Carlucci

IN ThIS<br />

ISSuE...<br />

FOCuS<br />

REPORT<br />



24 ESA Image<br />

30 NEWS<br />








MAkERS<br />






6<br />

38 AGENDA<br />

12<br />

AN INTERvIEw wITh<br />

kEvIN DOwLING,<br />





View of famous landmark<br />

of Columbus Statue and<br />

Cathedral, Parque Colon.<br />

geomediaonline.it<br />

<strong>GEOmedia</strong>, published bi-monthly, is the Italian magazine for<br />

geomatics. Since more than 20 years publishing to open a<br />

worldwide window to the Italian market and vice versa.<br />

Themes are on latest news, developments and applications in<br />

the complex field of earth surface sciences.<br />

<strong>GEOmedia</strong> faces with all activities relating to the acquisition,<br />

processing, querying, analysis, presentation, dissemination,<br />

management and use of geo-data and geo-information. The<br />

magazine covers subjects such as surveying, environment,<br />

mapping, GNSS systems, GIS, Earth Observation, Geospatial<br />

Data, BIM, UAV and 3D technologies.

ADV<br />

ITALy,<br />






14<br />

EPSILON 11<br />

ESRI ITALIA 33<br />


DATRONIX 39<br />


GEOMAX 30<br />

GIS3W 31<br />

GTER 23<br />

PLANETEK 39<br />

STONEX 17<br />



TEAM @ hERE<br />



18<br />

26<br />

DEEPCuBE:<br />








TEOREMA 38<br />

Lake Mar Chiquita<br />

In the background the Copernicus<br />

Sentinel-1 mission<br />

image taken over Lake Mar<br />

Chiquita – an endorheic salt<br />

lake in the northeast province<br />

of Córdoba, Argentina.<br />

Several small islands lie in the<br />

lake, the most important of<br />

which is El Médano. Vast expanses<br />

of saline marshes can<br />

be seen on the lake’s northern<br />

shore. The lake has been designated<br />

as a Ramsar Site of<br />

International Importance,<br />

and is considered one of the<br />

most important wetlands in<br />

Argentina owing to its rich<br />

biodiversity. Over 25 species<br />

of fish are known to breed in<br />

Lake Mar Chiquita, with fishing<br />

and livestock being the<br />

principal land uses.<br />

The colours of this image<br />

come from the combination<br />

of two polarisations from the<br />

Copernicus Sentinel-1 radar<br />

mission, which have been<br />

converted into a single image.<br />

This image was acquired on<br />

17 November 2020.<br />

(Source: ESA - Image of the<br />

week: "Lake Mar Chiquita")<br />

una pubblicazione<br />

Chief Editor<br />

RENZO CARLUCCI, direttore@rivistageomedia.it<br />

Editorial Board<br />

Vyron Antoniou, Fabrizio Bernardini, Mario Caporale,<br />

Luigi Colombo, Mattia Crespi, Luigi Di Prinzio,<br />

Michele Dussi, Michele Fasolo, Marco Lisi, Flavio Lupia,<br />

Beniamino Murgante, Aldo Riggio, Mauro Salvemini,<br />

Domenico Santarsiero, Attilio Selvini, Donato Tufillaro<br />

Managing Director<br />

FULVIO BERNARDINI, fbernardini@rivistageomedia.it<br />

Editorial Staff<br />


redazione@rivistageomedia.it<br />

Marketing Assistant<br />

TATIANA IASILLO, diffusione@rivistageomedia.it<br />

Design<br />

DANIELE CARLUCCI, dcarlucci@rivistageomedia.it<br />

MediaGEO soc. coop.<br />

Via Palestro, 95 00185 Roma<br />

Tel. 06.64871209 - Fax. 06.62209510<br />

info@rivistageomedia.it<br />

ISSN 1128-8132<br />

Reg. Trib. di Roma N° 243/2003 del 14.05.03<br />

Stampa: System Graphics Srl<br />

Via di Torre Santa Anastasia 61 00134 Roma<br />

Paid subscriptions<br />

<strong>GEOmedia</strong> is available bi-monthly on a subscription<br />

Science & Technology<br />

basis.<br />

Communication<br />

The annual subscription rate is € 45. It is possible to subscribe at any time via<br />

https://geo4all.it/abbonamento. The cost of one issue is € 9 €, for the previous<br />

issue the cost is € 12 €. Prices and conditions may be subject to change.<br />

Magazine founded by: Domenico Santarsiero.<br />

Issue closed on: 28/08/202<br />

Science & Technology Communication

FOCUS<br />

AMPERE (Asset Mapping Platform for<br />

Emerging CountRies Electrification)<br />

a GNSS-based integrated platform<br />

for energy decision makers<br />

by Marco Nisi, Marco Lisi, Alberto Mennella, Pedro Cabrera, Pere Molina,<br />

Giancarmine Fasano, Roberto Muscinelli, Simone Maurizi<br />

Despite global electrification<br />

rates are significantly<br />

progressing, the access to<br />

electricity in emerging countries<br />

is still far from being achieved.<br />

Indeed, the challenge facing such<br />

communities goes beyond the<br />

lack of infrastructure assets; what<br />

is needed is a holistic assessment<br />

of the energy demand and its<br />

expected growth over time, based<br />

on an accurate assessment of<br />

deployed resources and their<br />

maintenance status.<br />

As an example, one<br />

big problem plaguing<br />

Dominican Republic is<br />

the precarious, often chaotic<br />

status of large part of the electricity<br />

distribution network<br />

(figure 1), which, besides<br />

making the service unreliable<br />

and sometimes dangerous,<br />

takes away from the simple<br />

beauty of the area.<br />

The old lines are now being<br />

replaced with several dedicated<br />

interventions to make areas<br />

more appealing. Moreover,<br />

the electricity distribution<br />

companies experience serious<br />

problems with electricity leakages<br />

and were losing vast<br />

amounts of resources from<br />

illegal connections to the grid.<br />

Based on the above scenario,<br />

the AMPERE solution aims to<br />

support the decision-making<br />

process – including activities<br />

planning, data acquisition<br />

and final reporting - for investments<br />

and network maintenance,<br />

based on infrastructural<br />

and geomorphological<br />

assets mapping intended as a<br />

service provided by AMPERE<br />

consortium (figure 2).<br />

The concept<br />

The original need for<br />

AMPERE platform comes<br />

from issues related to operations<br />

performed by on-field<br />

surveyors to collect information<br />

about mapping and<br />

status of electrical assets. In<br />

this operational scenario, the<br />

surveyors have to operate in<br />

a time-efficient and safe way,<br />

using hand-held cameras<br />

and geomatic tools to collect<br />

data, which are then processed<br />

offline.<br />

AMPERE provides an important<br />

contribution, being<br />

the survey also supported by<br />

Remotely Piloted Aircraft’s<br />

(RPA’s) performing operations<br />

in a semi-automated<br />

way, i.e., exploiting on-board<br />

sensors (optical/ thermal<br />

6 <strong>GEOmedia</strong> n°3-<strong>2021</strong>

FOCUS<br />

cameras, LIDAR and GNSS<br />

receivers) to keep their trajectory<br />

as close as possible to<br />

the targets to be surveyed.<br />

electric assets, thus achieving<br />

high-resolution details while<br />

maintaining a safe distance to<br />

avoid collisions.<br />

It is worth noting that the use<br />

of GNSS (GPS and Galileo)<br />

receivers allows not only a<br />

precise navigation of the<br />

drones, but also a highly accurate<br />

geo-referencing of the<br />

collected data. These features<br />

will be in the future further<br />

enhanced taking advantage of<br />

the soon operational Galileo<br />

High Accuracy Service<br />

(HAS).<br />

AMPERE proposes a solution<br />

(figure 3) based on a GIS<br />

cloud mapping technology,<br />

collecting on field data acquired<br />

with optical/thermal<br />

cameras and LIDAR installed<br />

on board an RPA as well as<br />

other data captured with conventional<br />

sensors on ground.<br />

In particular, an RPA will be<br />

able to fly over selected areas<br />

performing semi-automated<br />

operations to collect optical<br />

and thermal images as well as<br />

3D LiDAR-based reconstruction<br />

products. Such products<br />

are post processed at the<br />

central cloud GIS platform,<br />

allowing operators to perform<br />

planning and monitoring activities<br />

by means of different<br />

screen views. Analytic tools<br />

can resolve data accessibility<br />

issues and improve the decision-making<br />

process.<br />

AMPERE system elements<br />

RPA platforms<br />

Two RPA typologies have<br />

been considered in AMPERE:<br />

Fixed Wing RPA’s and<br />

Multirotor RPA’s.<br />

A Fixed Wing RPA, flying<br />

high and fast, is very suitable<br />

for a rapid inspection<br />

over a long power line, but it<br />

cannot observe small details<br />

(e.g., signs of deterioration)in<br />

electric towers, distribution<br />

boxes, wires and insulators.<br />

However, it can provide the<br />

general topology of the network<br />

by flying even 80 Km<br />

per flight (Beyond Visual<br />

Line of Sight, BVLOS), embarking<br />

an RGB camera and/<br />

or a thermal (IR) imager as<br />

payload.<br />

The AMPERE fixed-wing<br />

RPA is based on the Believer<br />

1960 mm Wingspan platform.<br />

This flight platform<br />

features a high portability,<br />

stability and durability, making<br />

it ideal for industry class<br />

aerial survey. The Fixed Wing<br />

RPA has been designed with<br />

active tracking antenna system<br />

(ATAS) needed for long<br />

range flight operations.<br />

Figures 4 and 5 show, respectively,<br />

the fixed-wing drone<br />

and its portable control and<br />

communications system.<br />

A multi-rotor aircraft is the<br />

most suitable choice to provide<br />

very detailed thermal and<br />

optical images by hovering in<br />

the air at close distance from<br />

the various components of<br />

the power line; moreover, it<br />

is suggested for rural as well<br />

as for sub-urban and urban<br />

Figure 2: AMPERE service value chain<br />

Figure 1: aerial power lines in Dominican Republic<br />

environments. The only<br />

disadvantage of this type of<br />

drone comes from the relatively<br />

limited autonomy: about<br />

half an hour, working on batteries.<br />

The main platform used<br />

for powerline inspections<br />

in AMPERE is the DJI<br />

MATRICE 300 RTK. It is<br />

a powerful industrial drone<br />

platform with an advanced<br />

<strong>GEOmedia</strong> n°3-<strong>2021</strong> 7

FOCUS<br />

Figure 3: AMPERE architectural concept<br />

Figure 4: Fixed wing drone developed in AMPERE project<br />

flight controller system,<br />

6 Directional Sensing,<br />

Positioning system and FPV<br />

camera. This system can implement<br />

semiautonomous<br />

operations, thanks to the<br />

high-end onboard sensors<br />

and sophisticated data fusion<br />

algorithms. Moreover, this<br />

platform has different mechanisms<br />

(SDK) to integrate specific<br />

third-party equipment.<br />

Specifically, in the AMPERE<br />

application the drone is<br />

equipped with a payload,<br />

including a LIDAR instrument,<br />

which implements a<br />

complete 3D Laser scanning,<br />

providing a high-resolution<br />

map of the power line,<br />

with a centimetric level resolution;<br />

a Synchronized<br />

Stereo Optical Camera and<br />

a Triple Frequency Multi-<br />

Constellation E-GNSS<br />

Receiver, used for georeferencing<br />

the acquired data and<br />

for they synchronization.<br />

Figures 6 and 7 show the<br />

main multi-rotor RPA and its<br />

multi-instrument payload.<br />

Finally, in addition to the<br />

fixed-wing and the main multi-rotor<br />

RPA’s, a small multirotor<br />

drone with a Maximum<br />

Take-Off Mass (MTOM) of<br />

less than 250 g, including<br />

payload, will be used. The<br />

main advantage of this category<br />

is the possibility to fly<br />

over people not informed of<br />

drone operations, making it<br />

suitable to be employed even<br />

in crowded cities.<br />

AMPERE Cloud GIS Platform<br />

(ACGP)<br />

Electric utility companies<br />

need accurate information<br />

on their asset inventory, basically<br />

based on two types<br />

of geographical information:<br />

(i) asset mapping of<br />

the distribution network,<br />

containing crucial technical<br />

information and locations of<br />

infrastructural assets as poles,<br />

power lines, lights, circuits,<br />

equipment, facilities etc.; and<br />

(ii) information about the<br />

customers, including their<br />

locations and consumption<br />

details to determine the areas<br />

for potential new customers<br />

and network expansion..<br />

Indeed, the biggest problem<br />

electric utilities are facing is<br />

storing the historical data and<br />

updating it due to the realtime<br />

changes on the field.<br />

8 <strong>GEOmedia</strong> n°3-<strong>2021</strong>

FOCUS<br />

Accordingly, AMPERE Cloud<br />

GIS solution provides utilities<br />

with an overview of the<br />

entire process visualized on<br />

a map from campaign planning,<br />

execution, acquisition<br />

and processing to generate a<br />

final automated report (figures<br />

8 and 9).<br />

AMPERE Cloud GIS platform<br />

is a multi-sensor mapping<br />

system, featuring both<br />

3D reconstruction capabilities<br />

(based on LiDAR) and<br />

vision-based products (based<br />

on RGB/thermal cameras),<br />

that are already geo-referenced<br />

for their straight-forward<br />

use by end-user platforms<br />

in AMPERE. Moreover,<br />

AMPERE foresees co-registration<br />

and combination<br />

of RGB images and LiDAR<br />

point clouds. The key concept<br />

is that the LiDAR point<br />

cloud can provide 3D information<br />

to image data, while<br />

in an inverse fashion, LiDAR<br />

points can be associated to<br />

image windows where these<br />

points are observed, thus supporting<br />

visual inspection.<br />

The greatest benefit is the<br />

real-time collaboration<br />

between top management<br />

and field operators where<br />

maps and layers can be shared<br />

with different levels of<br />

access. Moreover, AMPERE<br />

Cloud GIS solution can be<br />

used with no need for extensive<br />

education of operators:<br />

the solution is implemented<br />

in a process workflow immediately<br />

and it is suitable for<br />

non-GIS users as well as for<br />

professionals. The option to<br />

collect line features in the<br />

field with high GNSS accuracy<br />

and to store them in the<br />

database can increase time<br />

and cost efficiency of the entire<br />

organization as it offers a<br />

more convenient way to collect<br />

data.<br />

As such, in the context of<br />

AMPERE, Galileo – the<br />

European GNSS system - is a<br />

key enabler, especially when<br />

leveraging its unique features:<br />

a free-of-charge High<br />

Accuracy Service (HAS) and<br />

highly precise E5 AltBOC<br />

code measurements. These<br />

features are of great benefit<br />

for the industry of mapping<br />

in general -and electric utilities<br />

in particular-, as they<br />

simplify the mapping methodology<br />

(less supporting<br />

infrastructure needed) and<br />

therefore increase time and<br />

cost efficiency, offering a<br />

more convenient way to manage<br />

energy distribution. The<br />

core component in this task<br />

is GeoNumerics’ NEXA, a robust<br />

non-linear least-squares<br />

generic sequential estimation<br />

engine to compute trajectories<br />

of any type. NEXA has<br />

been designed to be extensible<br />

and adaptative, provided<br />

with the appropriate plugand-play<br />

toolboxes (GNSS,<br />

or GNSS/INS, or GNSS/INS<br />

plus other sensors).<br />

Figure 6: AMPERE multi-rotor RPA<br />

Future works<br />

and conclusions<br />

The AMPERE system is<br />

being tested in Europe. After<br />

on factory tests performed<br />

at partners’ premises in Italy<br />

and Spain, a dedicated campaign<br />

covering technical (accuracy<br />

of sensors installed on<br />

the drone) and operational<br />

(user experience) aspects is<br />

planned in September <strong>2021</strong><br />

for the complete system acceptance.<br />

Figure 5: fixed wing drone<br />

control & communications<br />

system<br />

<strong>GEOmedia</strong> n°3-<strong>2021</strong> 9

FOCUS<br />

Figure 7: AMPERE multi rotor RPA payload<br />

Figure 8: ACGP. Project creation for campaign planning<br />

Figure 9: ACGP. Network assets topology acquisition with attached products<br />

Furtherly, a validation campaign<br />

with Stakeholder’s<br />

involvement will be conducted<br />

in Santo Domingo,<br />

in November <strong>2021</strong>. The<br />

sessions will measure the<br />

benefit of the AMPERE<br />

solution in terms of time of<br />

operations and accuracy of<br />

collected data when compared<br />

to traditional state-ofthe-art<br />

approaches based on<br />

the usage of geodetic GNSS<br />

receivers.<br />

The area is already selected<br />

after agreement with<br />

Corporation Dominicana de<br />

Empresas Eléctricas Estatales<br />

(CDEEE), also supporting<br />

with formal interest the<br />

consortium together with<br />

Instituto Dominicano de<br />

Aviación Civil (IDAC).<br />

The AMPERE solution will<br />

be used to map “Los Tres<br />

Brazos” sector, eastern side<br />

(ML69-02 EDEESTE) circuit,<br />

in a popular district of<br />

Santo Domingo.. The campaign<br />

in Santo Domingo,<br />

with involvement of the<br />

above mentioned stakeholders,<br />

will be an important<br />

pillar for qualification review<br />

also from a market perspective,<br />

providing necessary<br />

feedbacks upon the maturity<br />

of the envisaged business<br />

models (figure 10):<br />

• AMPERE as a Product<br />

(AaaP): This option includes<br />

the provision of<br />

the overall needed fleet of<br />

drones (already tested and<br />

integrated with the payload),<br />

a training session (in<br />

which installation activities<br />

will be performed), the<br />

maintenance and post-sales<br />

service (for both physical<br />

assets – e.g. drones and<br />

payloads - and platform<br />

customer care/updates);<br />

10 <strong>GEOmedia</strong> n°3-<strong>2021</strong>

FOCUS<br />

• AMPERE as a<br />

Service (AaaS): This<br />

option includes the<br />

provision of the overall<br />

service, meant<br />

as gridline mapping<br />

and inspection and<br />

production of reports<br />

and management<br />

of the ACGP.<br />

As a final output<br />

the client would get<br />

a detailed report of<br />

the As-Is situation of<br />

the network, based<br />

on the surveys made<br />

by an allocated team<br />

of engineers and<br />

drone operators.<br />

C’è vita nel nostro mondo.<br />

Figure 10: AMPERE business models<br />


Galileo, Copernicus, Powerlines, Electrical Asset Mapping, Emerging<br />

Countries<br />


The purpose of the AMPERE (Asset Mapping Platform for Emerging<br />

countRies Electrification) project is to provide a dedicated solution for<br />

electrical power network information gathering: AMPERE will support<br />

decision making actors (e.g. institutions and public/ private companies<br />

in charge to manage electrical network) to collect all needed info to<br />

plan electrical network maintenance and upgrade. AMPERE solution<br />

is based on a GIS Cloud mapping technology, collecting on field data<br />

acquired with optical/thermal cameras and LIDAR installed on board a<br />

Remote Piloted Aircraft (RPA).<br />

AMPERE project has received funding from the European GNSS<br />

Agency (grant agreement No 870227) under the European Union’s<br />

Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme.<br />

AUTHOR<br />

Marco Nisi<br />

marco.nisi@grupposistematica.it<br />

Simone Maurizi, Free Soft and Tech s.r.l.,<br />

Marco Lisi, Independent consultant,<br />

Alberto Mennella, TOPview<br />

Pedro Cabrera, UNPHU University<br />

Pere Molina, GeoNumerics S.A.,<br />

Giancarmine Fasano, University of Naples Federico II,<br />

Roberto Muscinelli, Business Integration Partners S.p.A.<br />

AMPERE Consortium<br />

www.h2020-ampere.eu<br />

Trasformazione e pubblicazione di dati<br />

territoriali in conformità a INSPIRE<br />

Assistenza su Hight Value Datasets,<br />

APIs, Location Intelligence, Data Spaces<br />

INSPIRE Helpdesk<br />

We support all INSPIRE implementers<br />

EsinItaiaS<br />

Viale della oncordia, <br />

endicino S<br />

el e a <br />

infoepsilonitaliait<br />

www.epsilon-italia.it<br />

www.inspire-helpdesk.eu<br />

<strong>GEOmedia</strong> n°3-<strong>2021</strong> 11


An interview with<br />

Kevin Dowling,<br />

CEO of KAARTA<br />

What does Kaarta<br />

mean and why you<br />

choose this name for<br />

your company?<br />

Kevin Dowling: The<br />

name ‘Kaarta’ is a<br />

phonetic reference to<br />

cartography, the science<br />

or practice of map making,<br />

and all things cartographic.<br />

Kaarta, the<br />

company, is all about<br />

mapping and localization.<br />

The name – with<br />

the extra a added for effect<br />

– captures the company’s<br />

pioneering take<br />

on mapping to produce<br />

3D models in real time.<br />

The name is not about<br />

the technique we use,<br />

it’s about the problems<br />

we solve.<br />

Kaarta is a relatively<br />

recent company, but<br />

has grown a lot in<br />

recent years. What is<br />

your magic potion?<br />

There’s little that is<br />

magical about growing<br />

a company. It’s a lot<br />

of time, effort and<br />

plain hard work, but if<br />

anything is our magic<br />

potion it would be the<br />

core algorithms and<br />

approaches to solving a<br />

long-standing problem<br />

of figuring out where<br />

you are and what is<br />

around you. It’s a hard<br />

problem and many<br />

groups have attempted<br />

to solve it. There is no<br />

simple closed-form<br />

solution. It is truly a<br />

chicken and egg problem:<br />

Kaarta uses the<br />

world around us to<br />

figure out where we<br />

are while using where<br />

we are to figure what is<br />

around us. That’s both<br />

magical and bewildering!<br />

Kaarta is specialist in<br />

real-time mobile 3D<br />

reality capture. Which<br />

is the core business of<br />

the company?<br />

Capturing the real<br />

world as a 3D digital<br />

representation is important,<br />

and Kaarta does<br />

it quickly and accurately.<br />

But that is<br />

just the first step of<br />

what Kaarta does and<br />

what customers ultimately<br />

need. Kaarta’s<br />

core business is helping<br />

our customers get to<br />

the representation of<br />

the world that they<br />

need. This might be a<br />

floor plan, a 3D model,<br />

tagged and labelled assets<br />

and more. It starts<br />

with data capture and<br />

ends with a model, or a<br />

plan, or a decision.<br />

What are your best<br />

product and why?<br />

We have several products<br />

that are suitable<br />

for different applications<br />

so it’s hard to say<br />

what is best since each<br />

product is tailored for<br />

particular needs.<br />

• Contour - Simple<br />

handheld indoor reality<br />

capture. Fast and<br />

you can see results in<br />

real-time on an easyto-use<br />

touch screen.<br />

• Stencil 2 - Long range,<br />

lightweight, can<br />

be flown, carried, or<br />

driven. 100m range<br />

in all directions.<br />

Two flavours of lidar<br />

-16 and -32 line<br />

for the best quality.<br />

• Stencil Pro - The<br />

flagship - rugged<br />

outdoor or vehicle<br />

scanning yet can be<br />

carried when needed.<br />

Integrated GNSS,<br />

Rugged IP65 rating,<br />

200m range, and<br />

four 4K HD cameras<br />

provide real-time<br />

panoramic views.<br />

• Kaarta Cloud - Postprocessing<br />

made<br />

easy, visual, and<br />

collaborative. Kaarta<br />

Cloud even works<br />

with raw data files<br />

direct from lidar.<br />

• Kaarta Engine -<br />

Mostly licensed to<br />

robotics companies<br />

for robot localization<br />

and mapping. Easily<br />

integrated and interfaced<br />

into customer<br />

systems.<br />

Now you can see<br />

why there are multi-<br />

12 <strong>GEOmedia</strong> n°3-<strong>2021</strong>


ple ‘best’ products.<br />

They each serve their<br />

markets well!<br />

Kaarta recently introduced<br />

Stencil Pro.<br />

Users who have tried<br />

it have called it amazing:<br />

what is the secret<br />

of this MMS?<br />

Stencil Pro is a turnkey<br />

system advancing<br />

next generation mobile<br />

surveying. It is a new<br />

class of product for<br />

Kaarta, and for the<br />

industry as a whole. It<br />

marries the speed and<br />

ability to work in<br />

GNSS denied areas of<br />

a SLAM-based system<br />

with the distance and<br />

accuracy of a traditional<br />

mobile mapping<br />

system, at a fraction of<br />

the cost. Stencil Pro<br />

offers a fully integrated<br />

seamless design<br />

that incorporates an<br />

advanced lidar with<br />

200m of range in all<br />

directions, four 4K<br />

HD cameras to provide<br />

images that can be<br />

made into panoramic<br />

images. It offers a high<br />

quality Trimble GNSS<br />

with corrections capabilities,<br />

an excellent<br />

antenna, and a path to<br />

further upgrades. Also,<br />

a fully-integrated IMU<br />

is used for building accurate<br />

trajectories and<br />

therefore point clouds.<br />

Stencil Pro is also<br />

made for tougher<br />

environments and is<br />

rated IP 65. It’s not so<br />

much a secret as a lot<br />

of effort to make a great<br />

product.<br />

What will be the role<br />

of SLAM technology<br />

and Mobile Mapping in<br />

the creation of a digital<br />

world in the future?<br />

[The last question is<br />

completely open. We<br />

would like to understand<br />

how your company is<br />

contributing to autonomous<br />

robots. If you are<br />

developing particular<br />

sensors for autonomous<br />

robots, maps that are<br />

used by robots, SLAM<br />

for robots or new algorithms<br />

that allow robots<br />

to improve their ability<br />

to positioning, avoid<br />

collisions or make quick<br />

‟<br />

SLAM solutions<br />

enable many new<br />

and novel realms of<br />

capture, modeling,<br />

planning, and assessment.<br />

Because of<br />

the speed of SLAM<br />

and ever improving<br />

accuracy sufficient for<br />

all but the most stringent<br />

applications, the<br />

world can be modeled<br />

rapidly from the<br />

air, from vehicles, by<br />

people and by robots.<br />

Applications including<br />

subsurface and<br />

new multi-sensory<br />

capabilities will help<br />

The name is not<br />

decisions. We kindly<br />

ask you to go into this<br />

last subject as much as<br />

possible.]<br />

Kaarta’s highly mobile<br />

approach has<br />

many advantages over<br />

traditional capture<br />

approaches including<br />

fast speed, quick response,<br />

and minimum<br />

site access. In addition,<br />

Kaarta provides<br />

100% coverage<br />

in the most complex<br />

environments. We can<br />

scan environments<br />

impossible for stationary<br />

scans including<br />

partially flooded mines,<br />

shipboard applications,<br />

small spaces,<br />

and more.<br />

‟<br />

about the technique<br />

we use, it’s about the<br />

problems we solve<br />

model the world<br />

in unprecedented<br />

ways by mapping<br />

everything from<br />

acoustics, radiation,<br />

lighting, RF, chemicals,<br />

and much more.<br />

Robots will increasingly<br />

be part of our<br />

lives - even if they<br />

don’t look like the<br />

robots of fiction and<br />

movies. Whether navigating<br />

a warehouse<br />

or a retail store aisle,<br />

cleaning floors,<br />

or making a last mile<br />

home delivery, autonomous<br />

robots need<br />

a map and need to<br />

know where they are<br />

on the map. Kaarta<br />

provides a new level<br />

of understanding of<br />

spaces for humans and<br />

autonomous machines<br />

alike.<br />

Kaarta Engine is a<br />

set of purpose-built<br />

3D mapping and localization<br />

algorithms<br />

that artfully solve the<br />

simultaneous location<br />

and mapping problem<br />

of both capturing what<br />

is around it (mapping)<br />

and where it is in<br />

that environment (location).<br />

Kaarta’s unparalleled<br />

expertise in<br />

localization – a result<br />

of our deep robotics<br />

roots – is fundamental<br />

to our patentpending<br />

approach to<br />

solving the SLAM problem,<br />

reducing drift<br />

error of other SLAM<br />

systems by an order of<br />

magnitude.<br />

Kaarta Engine is at the<br />

heart of our Stencil<br />

and Contour products,<br />

and it is also the mapping<br />

and localization<br />

intelligence behind an<br />

array of third-party<br />

geospatial and mobile<br />

autonomous robotics<br />

solutions that need to<br />

quickly and accurately<br />

assess and understand<br />

the fundamental questions<br />

of where they<br />

are and what is around<br />

them.<br />


Mapping, Cartography,3D<br />

reality capture<br />

AUTHOR<br />

<strong>GEOmedia</strong> Editorial Staff<br />

redazione@rivistageomedia.it<br />

<strong>GEOmedia</strong> n°3-<strong>2021</strong> 13

REPORT<br />

Italy, discoverability in practice<br />

by Gabriele Ciasullo, Giovanna<br />

Scaglione and Antonio Rotundo<br />

Data discoverability is one<br />

of the main tasks, next to<br />

availability and interoperability,<br />

that public policy makers and<br />

implementers should take into<br />

due consideration in order to<br />

foster access, use and re-use of<br />

public sector information (PSI),<br />

particularly in case of open data.<br />

Users shall be enabled<br />

to easily search and<br />

find data they need for<br />

the most different purposes.<br />

That is clearly highlighted in<br />

the introduction statements<br />

of the INSPIRE Directive,<br />

where we can read that “The<br />

loss of time and resources in<br />

searching for existing (spatial)<br />

data or establishing whether they<br />

may be used for a particular<br />

purpose is a key obstacle to the<br />

full exploitation of the data<br />

available”.<br />

Metadata and data portals/<br />

catalogues are essential assets to<br />

enable that data discoverability.<br />

In Italy, AgID (Agency for<br />

Digital Italy,) is in charge of<br />

managing the National Open<br />

Data Portal (dati.gov.it,) and<br />

the National Catalogue for<br />

Spatial Data (RNDT - geodati.<br />

gov.it). These catalogues are<br />

the core components of an<br />

overall PSI infrastructure to be<br />

intended as the knowledge base<br />

of all PSI, implemented by the<br />

actions defined in the Three-<br />

Year Plan for ICT in the Public<br />

Administration 2019-<strong>2021</strong>.<br />

Recently the new version of<br />

both catalogues was released<br />

with important new features<br />

aimed at further improving the<br />

user experience in the search,<br />

access and use of public data<br />

and at facilitating the use of<br />

the functionalities for the<br />

documentation of data and<br />

services by the administrations.<br />

Some examples of these new<br />

features are:<br />

harvesting by dati.gov.it<br />

of data sources consistent<br />

with the national metadata<br />

profile DCAT-AP_IT;<br />

dataset search for<br />

each data provider, as<br />

well as for catalogue,<br />

under the new section<br />

“Administrations, Link<br />

opens in a new window” in<br />

dati.gov.it; and<br />

the pre-defined view<br />

for “priority datasets” in<br />

geodati.gov.it as defined<br />

under the INSPIRE<br />

context.<br />

The main aim of these<br />

activities is to make public data<br />

available to an ever wider and<br />

diversified audience. In this<br />

regard, the most significant<br />

action, defined in the threeyear<br />

plan mentioned above, has<br />

concerned the interoperable<br />

integration and coordination<br />

of the two catalogues through<br />

the implementation of<br />

GeoDCAT-AP, Link opens in a<br />

new window to ensure aligned,<br />

up-to-date and not conflicting<br />

descriptions of spatial data even<br />

available as open data. Thanks<br />

to that, open spatial data<br />

documented in the RNDT are<br />

also discoverable in the open<br />

data portal, without any other<br />

burden for data providers.<br />

Linked to that, specific<br />

pre-defined views were<br />

implemented in both catalogues<br />

in order to immediately<br />

identify:<br />

open data in geodati.gov.it,<br />

using DCAT-AP themes as<br />

search criteria;<br />

open spatial data coming<br />

from RNDT in dati.gov.it,<br />

using the INSPIRE themes<br />

as search criteria.<br />

14 <strong>GEOmedia</strong> n°3-<strong>2021</strong>

REPORT<br />

The classification of open<br />

spatial data against the<br />

DCAT-AP themes is based on<br />

the alignments between the<br />

controlled vocabularies used<br />

in ISO 19115 / INSPIRE<br />

metadata and those used in<br />

DCAT-AP defined under<br />

the ISA 2 programme. Other<br />

alignments needed for the<br />

implementation of GeoDCAT-<br />

AP and the coordination of<br />

the two catalogues are being<br />

published in the registry<br />

managed by AgID too (an<br />

example of a cross-map register<br />

is available at this URL.<br />

Finally, in order to address<br />

a wider audience, including<br />

non-GI experts, spatial data<br />

documented in RNDT<br />

is also available through<br />

the web search engines,<br />

specifically Google Dataset<br />

Search. A relevant current<br />

example on how that<br />

discoverability, outlined in<br />

this blog post, concretely<br />

works is the COVID-19<br />

open data, published by the<br />

Italian Department for Civil<br />

Protection, including national<br />

trends, provinces and regions<br />

data and areas, under the license<br />

CC-BY 4.0.<br />

Metadata for those datasets<br />

were published in RNDT as<br />

spatial data (e.g. see metadata<br />

for the dataset of zones at<br />

national level for containing<br />

COVID-19 contagion) and,<br />

consequently, those datasets are<br />

also made discoverable:<br />

in dati.gov.it, as open data;<br />

in the European Data<br />

Portal, as both dati.gov.<br />

it and geodati.gov.it are<br />

harvested;<br />

in the INSPIRE<br />

Geoportal, as geodati.gov.it<br />

is harvested;<br />

in Google Dataset Search.<br />

In summary, Open Data are<br />

available in an ‘universal’ way,<br />

regardless the search tool used<br />

by the users. Additional features<br />

are being implemented in both<br />

catalogues and will be presented<br />

in a future blog post.<br />

Interview on GeoDCAT-AP - Insights from Agency<br />

for Digital Italy<br />

Interview with Antonio Rotundo, Geographic Information<br />

Expert, and Gabriele Ciasullo, Head of Databases and<br />

Open Data Office, Agency for Digital Italy (AgID)<br />

Why did your agency opt for GeoDCAT-AP?<br />

AgID (Agency for Digital Italy) has been working on a<br />

national strategy for an overall public sector information<br />

infrastructure as knowledge base of all public information<br />

resources, implemented by the actions defined in the<br />

Three-Year Plan for ICT in the Public Administration.<br />

The core components of that infrastructure are the national<br />

catalogue for spatial data (RNDT) and the national<br />

open data portal.<br />

The Agency decided to implement GeoDCAT-AP to<br />

achieve an interoperable integration and coordination of<br />

the two catalogues. The aim was also to ensure aligned,<br />

up-to-date and not conflicting descriptions of spatial data<br />

even available as open data.<br />

Furthermore, it supports the general objectives to apply<br />

the once-only principle and to improve coordination<br />

between the INSPIRE implementation and eGovernment,<br />

open data and other relevant processes at the<br />

national level. This is recommended in several EU official<br />

documents, such as the eGovernment Action Plan, the<br />

European Interoperability Framework, etc.<br />

How was the implementation of GeoDCAT-AP carried<br />

out in Italy?<br />

The implementation of GeoDCAT-AP in Italy (named<br />

GeoDCAT-AP_IT) was addressed as a specific action in<br />

the previously mentioned Three-Year Plan for ICT in the<br />

Public Administration. The Plan is a strategic policy document<br />

for all public administrations established by the<br />

government which oversees the digital transformation of<br />

the country.<br />

The actions foreseen for the implementation of<br />

GeoDCAT-AP are:<br />

the definition of national guidelines (published in<br />

January 2018);<br />

the implementation of these guidelines and the development<br />

of the tools needed for their implementation<br />

(already done);<br />

and the full engagement of the Italian organisations<br />

managing local catalogues.<br />

The tools developed include the XSLT script extended<br />

(to take into account the extensions introduced in the<br />

national metadata profiles) and the GeoDCAT-AP_IT<br />

API reusing and extending the one developed under the<br />

ISA² Programme.<br />

<strong>GEOmedia</strong> n°3-<strong>2021</strong> 15

REPORT<br />

Can you give examples of how public administrations<br />

in Italy can use GeoDCAT-AP today?<br />

Thanks to GeoDCAT-AP, public administrations can<br />

document open spatial data ONLY in the national catalogue<br />

for spatial data that will directly enable and provide<br />

access to spatial data also in the national open data<br />

portal.<br />

Public administrations at the local level are expected to<br />

adopt the national approach also for their catalogues. For<br />

this purpose, we make the API available for reuse under<br />

the European Union Public Licence (EUPL) to facilitate<br />

the implementation also at the local level.<br />

Users and developers can also use the API to have a different<br />

format (RDF/XML and JSON-LD) for the metadata<br />

published in the national catalogue for spatial data.<br />

What are the benefits of GeoDCAT-AP for your organisation?<br />

How could it benefit other public administrations?<br />

We can identify benefits both on the side of the public<br />

administrations and on the side of the users.<br />

The use of GeoDCAT-AP allows our organisation to<br />

make open spatial data available to a wider and diversified<br />

audience, beyond the geospatial domain.<br />

Moreover, it allows to avoid the double burden on public<br />

administrations concerning the documentation of open<br />

geodata in both catalogues. Consequently, GeoDCAT-<br />

AP helps overcome the possible misalignments between<br />

the metadata for the same dataset published in the two<br />

catalogues.<br />

On the side of users, GeoDCAT-AP allows to improve<br />

the user experience in the discoverability of data. The<br />

more the metadata quality increases, the more effective<br />

the search becomes.<br />

Can you give an insight into your involvement in the<br />

work on GeoDCAT-AP?<br />

We actively participated in the development and revision<br />

of GeoDCAT-AP specification as members of the<br />

Working Group established under the ISA² Programme.<br />

In that context, we also provided a study comparing ISO<br />

19115:2003, INSPIRE and ISO 19115-1:2014 (the latest<br />

version of ISO 19115), included in Annex III to the<br />

specification.<br />

Moreover, we contributed to the activity carried out for<br />

the definition of the alignments between the controlled<br />

vocabularies used in ISO 19115 / INSPIRE metadata<br />

and those used in DCAT-AP.<br />

Finally, based on our experience in implementing<br />

GeoDCAT in Italy, we will further contribute to improve<br />

the GeoDCAT-AP specification by reporting issues<br />

and gaps as well as extensions included in the national<br />

implementation.<br />


In Italy, AgID (Agency for Digital<br />

Italy) is in charge of managing the<br />

National Open Data Portal (dati.<br />

gov.it) and the National Catalogue<br />

for Spatial Data (RNDT, geodati.<br />

gov.it). Data discoverability is one<br />

of the main tasks, next to availability<br />

and interoperability, that public<br />

policy makers and implementers<br />

should take into due consideration<br />

in order to foster access, use and<br />

re-use of public sector information<br />

(PSI), particularly in case of open<br />

data.<br />


RNDT, AGID, Open Data<br />

AUTHOR<br />

Gabriele Ciasullo<br />

ciasullo@agid.gov.it<br />

Giovanna Scaglione<br />

Antonio Rotundo<br />

AgID,<br />

Italian National<br />

Open Data Portal<br />

(https://dati.gov.it)<br />

National Catalogue for<br />

Spatial Data<br />

(https://geodati.gov.it)<br />

16 <strong>GEOmedia</strong> n°3-<strong>2021</strong>

REPORT<br />

Sede in Italia<br />

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Una linea di prodotti Made in Italy<br />

Dove siamo Chiamaci Contattaci<br />

Seguici sui Social<br />

Viale dell’Industria 53<br />

20037, Paderno Dugnano (MI)<br />

Tel. +39 02 78619201<br />

www.stonex.it<br />

info@stonex.it - italia@stonex.it<br />

<strong>GEOmedia</strong> n°3-<strong>2021</strong> 17

REPORT<br />

Local Change Detection<br />

Team @ Here TECHNOLOGIES<br />

A mirror to the world<br />

by Here Technologies<br />

Who are the Local Data<br />

Intelligence Team<br />

and what is the important<br />

of location services?<br />

The Local Data Intelligence<br />

Team (known as LDI team) is<br />

a global team, with geo spatial<br />

experts in each region. Different<br />

cultures and local knowledge<br />

allow for a rainbow of expertise<br />

in this team.<br />

Although we are local, we contribute<br />

toward global solutions.<br />

Our team is in a truly unique<br />

position given the global context,<br />

we carry the responsibility<br />

of receiving and processing<br />

information in order to identify<br />

changes and solutions.<br />

Local Change Detection<br />

and its world<br />

(Superior) Local Change<br />

Detection is one of the main<br />

activities of the Local Data<br />

Intelligence Team.<br />

Today and every day, reality is<br />

changing and so are our maps!<br />

Local Change Detection aims at<br />

pro-actively identifying and prioritizing<br />

real-world changes that<br />

need to be reflected in HERE<br />

maps. We focus on the freshness<br />

staying one step ahead. This<br />

Modern map-making and maintenance require the normalization and<br />

conflation of combined datasets from many different sources and channels.<br />

“The challenge is to mirror the real world by refreshing our maps as quickly<br />

and consistently as we possibly can.”<br />

"We deliver fresh<br />

maps in order to<br />

experience an<br />

optimal location<br />

service."<br />

18 <strong>GEOmedia</strong> n°3-<strong>2021</strong>

REPORT<br />

“We are a Global<br />

high-tech team<br />

with a Local Flavor,<br />

we are the eyes<br />

and ears wherever<br />

you are!”<br />

We are the Local<br />

Change Detection<br />

team and we know<br />

what tomorrow is<br />

going to be, today”<br />

is why we strive to proactively<br />

identify approaching changes,<br />

soon to manifest in the near<br />

future.<br />

The team monitors through<br />

tools (externally and internally<br />

developed) how our physical<br />

reality is continuously evolving<br />

and changing. All relevant<br />

changes are verified and supported<br />

during the ingestion<br />

process, according to priorities<br />

and reducing turnaround time<br />

between detection and data ingestion.<br />

All of this ensures the<br />

freshness and competitiveness of<br />

HERE maps. Media reports are<br />

one major source for this kind<br />

of information. Considering,<br />

however, that millions of news<br />

stories are published every day,<br />

drowning in this flow of data<br />

becomes a real possibility.<br />

Real word changes can start<br />

from major updates, passing<br />

through Admin postal code<br />

changes, neighborhood expansion<br />

to traffic road closure.<br />

Major Updates are changes affecting<br />

major communication<br />

arteries, or changes requested by<br />

customers regarding e.g. Points<br />

of Interest. These changes are<br />

crucial for the mobility experience,<br />

for our customers and<br />

the end users, who are always at<br />

the core of our business.<br />

The Local Change Detection<br />

Team detects changes through<br />

different sources of data such as<br />

Media monitoring, GPS Probe<br />

Points, Satellite images, local<br />

knowledge and many other data<br />

flows. These detected real world<br />

changes then proceed to feed<br />

different tools assisting in the<br />

update of HERE maps.<br />

Team members are in contact<br />

with local authorities and government<br />

agencies, to receive<br />

updates, thus transforming information<br />

into data available in<br />

our HERE maps as well.<br />

The hidden complexity in creating<br />

a digital clone of reality covering<br />

more than 400 navigable<br />

attributes, geometry, 2D and<br />

3D building footprints could<br />

easily be mistaken for magic.<br />

The challenge is to identify the<br />

information that matters most,<br />

in a flood of millions of articles<br />

produced every day. To achieve<br />

these optimal results HERE<br />

digests thousands of articles<br />

per week using in house software<br />

solutions combined with<br />

Machine Learning algorithms.<br />

In this way we guarantee competitiveness<br />

in what we produce<br />

and release.<br />

The process never ceases and is<br />

a cardinal step for HERE map<br />

maintenance, providing value<br />

in areas that are also updated by<br />

other detections methodologies<br />

and processes. Additionally, innovation<br />

and improvements are<br />

a crucial part of our journey.<br />

By definition a map is a symbolic<br />

representation of selected<br />

characteristics of a place, usually<br />

drawn on a flat surface. Maps<br />

present information about the<br />

world in a simple, visual way.<br />

They teach us about the world<br />

by showing sizes and shapes, locations,<br />

features and distances.<br />

We would like this representation<br />

in our HERE maps to<br />

provide a service that everyone<br />

can enjoy with a truly enjoyable<br />

navigation experience, in real<br />

time.<br />


Modern map-making and maintenance require the normalization<br />

and conflation of combined datasets from many<br />

different sources and channels. All of this ensures the freshness<br />

and competitiveness of HERE maps.<br />


Mapping, Cartography, HERE<br />

AUTHOR<br />

Maria Elena Ceci<br />

Communication & Learning Lead for<br />

Local Data Intelligence Team at HERE<br />


<strong>GEOmedia</strong> n°3-<strong>2021</strong> 19








XR 2020:<br />

News & Events<br />

by Tiziana Primavera<br />

Innovative Tech<br />

Evangelist - AR/VR<br />

senior expert<br />

Augmented Reality, a<br />

young computer discipline<br />

that deals with the superimpression<br />

of digital content<br />

to the observed real world, has<br />

the appropriate requirements<br />

to guarantee a good threshold<br />

of interactivity to applications<br />

dedicated to the design and use<br />

Example application of markerless geolocalized AR (Byod experience)<br />

of spaces in general, whether<br />

they are designed or virtually<br />

rebuilt, completely distorting<br />

the usual and limited paradigm,<br />

now consolidated, of the classic<br />

desktop configuration, mouse,<br />

keyboard.<br />

Augmented Reality is a computer<br />

discipline that studies projective<br />

systems able to increase<br />

reality with digital content, it<br />

could be defined as the ability<br />

to superimpose on reality observed<br />

by the subject a set of information<br />

related to the context.<br />

In summary, the perception of<br />

an Augmented Reality user is<br />

implemented, "augmented" by<br />

the presence of digital objects in<br />

its field of view, enriching the<br />

observed view with additional<br />

information of any complex<br />

contents of 3D graphics (threedimensional<br />

objects - 3D animations)<br />

or more elementary<br />

(two-dimensional type: video<br />

- infographic data)<br />

Therefore, in a sensory overcoming<br />

made possible thanks to<br />

the computer system implemented,<br />

Reale and Virtual apparently<br />

coexist in the observed scene<br />

and the user of the interactive<br />

visual experience thus conceived,<br />

can move quietly in the<br />

real space, thus comfortably<br />

observing virtual objects from<br />

various points of view, in the<br />

desired scale, also therefore on<br />

the natural scale 1 :1.<br />

It should be pointed out that in<br />

more advanced applications, not<br />

augmented reality, but Mixed<br />

Reality with the integration<br />

into the system of appropriate<br />

sensors, sensory overrun can be<br />

extended as well as to the view<br />

to the simulated touch, or the<br />

user active in the experience,<br />

can not only visually inspect the<br />

three-dimensional digital object<br />

placed in real-time mode in the<br />

desired Real Space , but also to<br />

move it as it pleases, raising the<br />

level of potential interactivity.<br />

Mainly immersive technologies<br />

such as Virtual Reality and<br />

interactive such as Augmented<br />

reality, have found happy application<br />

in multiple and heterogeneous<br />

contexts of use, both<br />

at the entreprise leveland in the<br />

various professional application<br />

areas (training on the job, maintenancecontexts,<br />

site management,<br />

interactive communication-presentation<br />

of projects on<br />

aplanimetric basis at the desired<br />

scale or on-site at the real scale,<br />

20 <strong>GEOmedia</strong> n°3-<strong>2021</strong>


enhancement of archaeological<br />

assets, etc.). The display of these<br />

"three-dimensional digital holograms"<br />

can take place via tablet/<br />

smartphone or wearable device<br />

(technological headsets).<br />

AR in the architectural sector<br />

In building contexts, augmented<br />

reality can be particularly<br />

functional in the visualization<br />

of projects under construction<br />

and in the visualization of the<br />

operations to be carried out on<br />

site. It can be used for on-site<br />

project analysis and to identify<br />

potential problems by visually<br />

inspecting the completedmodel<br />

or in itsconstituent, architectural<br />

and plant engineering<br />

parts.<br />

The computer-generated digital<br />

structure can be superimposed<br />

on the real environment in<br />

which it will be built, before it<br />

happens, thus making possible<br />

design errors evident during<br />

thepreliminary phase of visual<br />

control with huge economic savings,<br />

allowing you to save a lot<br />

of financial resources before any<br />

construction work begins.<br />

Land soon companies able to<br />

use augmented reality to visualize<br />

georeferenced construction<br />

site models, underground structures,<br />

cablesand tubactions,<br />

simply by using BYOD (mobile<br />

devices) technologies.<br />

In this way, the construction<br />

problems can be reviewed and<br />

actively collaborated on useful<br />

changes between design and<br />

construction.<br />

But this technology can also be<br />

interesting to support design<br />

operations in the architect's<br />

studio and in remotely participatory<br />

design, being able to<br />

intervene on the same digital<br />

plastic, although operating in<br />

separate studios.<br />

Clearly being a visual technology,<br />

its killer application<br />

consists in communicating the<br />

project to the customer, which<br />

Project viewable on site in scale 1:1, inspectable and modifiable in real - time mode<br />

can be implemented in different<br />

ways, at the desired scale,<br />

displaying a simple floor plan<br />

or at the real scale, to allow interactive<br />

walktroughs to the customer<br />

in the three-dimensional<br />

space, sometimes using mixed<br />

AR-VR applications.<br />

The user experience can be improved<br />

with AR applications,<br />

allowing not only to visualize<br />

objects and layouts within a<br />

building to better understand<br />

the space planning and project<br />

display, but also allowing them<br />

to display in real-time mode<br />

Integration of the AR system - Bim data for prefiguring the overall dimensions.<br />

<strong>GEOmedia</strong> n°3-<strong>2021</strong> 21


Interactive mixed reality application, two designers, albeit remotely, are placed in the condition of being able to<br />

modify the morphology of the project (Microsoft application)<br />

different finishes or furnishings<br />

or distribution layout options<br />

foreshadowed appropriately.<br />






The powerful representative potential<br />

of AR technology therefore<br />

allows, even in professional<br />

contexts oriented to the restoration<br />

and restoration of bodies of<br />

high historical and architectural<br />

value, to be able to offer an<br />

exact three-dimensional foreshadowing<br />

of the various predefined<br />

intervention concepts<br />

directly on-site and in real-time<br />

mode, as if they were photorealist<br />

holograms perfectly consistent<br />

Mixed reality application (Hololens device)<br />

with pre-existence, constantly<br />

recorded from the point of view<br />

of the observer, in order to be<br />

able to evaluate with greater<br />

accuracy the design or technical<br />

aesthetic solution considered<br />

optimal and more responsive<br />

to the essential specifies of the<br />

historical-architectural context<br />

of intervention.<br />

The orientation of the type of<br />

restoration to be undertaken<br />

clearly depends on a series of<br />

factors that go to frame in detail<br />

the structure on which to intervene,<br />

its conditions, the type of<br />

intervention and its complexity,<br />

Augmented Reality Technology<br />

allows a particular and more<br />

exhaustive verification, thanks<br />

to the accurate interactive visualization,<br />

since it takes place di-<br />

rectly on the building organism<br />

subject to the intervention.<br />

By innovatively introducing the<br />

"third dimension" and where<br />

necessary the photorealistic<br />

rendering of materials, it guarantees<br />

the technician and the<br />

client to be able to implement<br />

a critical-evaluation analysis of<br />

the MOST accurate and more<br />

exhaustive intervention in terms<br />

of technical and perceptual verification.<br />

This clearly represents a substantial<br />

progress and a dialectical<br />

overcoming of the previous<br />

visual communication methods<br />

of the previous generation<br />

project (rendering, post-production<br />

video photomontages, desktop-walktrough)<br />

characterized<br />

by the simple two-dimensional<br />

nature and the constrained view<br />

of use.<br />





Potential and further application<br />

contexts of contemporary<br />

visual technologies are also<br />

foreshadowed to support the<br />

different phases of the design<br />

process characteristic of restoration<br />

interventions, such as<br />

those related to the knowledge<br />

and diagnosis of the building<br />

organism.<br />

In fact, the project of the recovery<br />

/restoration interventions<br />

requires, as a preliminary step,<br />

the qualification and evaluation<br />

of the morpho-typological,<br />

material-constructive, technicaltechnological<br />

characteristics, the<br />

conservation status and residual<br />

performance, because of relief,<br />

investigations, and analysis in<br />

situ.<br />

Thanks to Virtual Reality techniques<br />

it is also possible to systemoticize<br />

the different information<br />

/ data / data sheets etc.<br />

identifying a tool that collects<br />

22 <strong>GEOmedia</strong> n°3-<strong>2021</strong>


and shares accurate representations<br />

of the state of the places<br />

and documents of multiple<br />

origins.<br />

The technology is able to support<br />

the development of virtual<br />

tours thanks to interactive<br />

hotspots that geoloize spherical<br />

photos. In immersive display<br />

mode, available through VR<br />

headsets.<br />

It is possible to configure a virtual<br />

tour of 360° panoramas, to<br />

simulate in an immersive way,<br />

the direct use and visual survey<br />

of the state of the places, returning<br />

the intuitive-immersive<br />

perception of the spatiality and<br />

materiality of the building.<br />

In more advanced and interactive<br />

VR systems, with a view to<br />

outlining a complete cognitive<br />

framework, with an important<br />

transversal role with respect to<br />

the design, implementation and<br />

control of conservative actions<br />

of architectural heritage, it is<br />

also possible to relate to the<br />

aforementioned digital environment<br />

the various multiple<br />

and heterogeneous survey data<br />

produced in advance, making<br />

them accessible and easily accessible.<br />


Augmented Reality, Virtual Reality,<br />

Participatory Design<br />


The scenarios that characterize the evolution<br />

of the professions related to technical<br />

design/representation in the light of the<br />

new interactive visualization technologies<br />

are outlined.<br />

AUTHOR<br />

Tiziana Primavera<br />

tiziana.primavera@unier.it<br />

AR Advisor, Ph.D.<br />

www.gter.it<br />

info@gter.it<br />

<strong>GEOmedia</strong> n°3-2020 23


24 <strong>GEOmedia</strong> n°3-<strong>2021</strong>

NEWS<br />

Lima, Peru<br />

Lima, the capital and largest<br />

city of Peru, is featured in this Copernicus<br />

Sentinel-2 image. The commercial and industrial centre<br />

of Peru, Lima is located on the mostly flat terrain in the Peruvian<br />

coastal plain, within the valleys of the Chillón, Rímac and Lurín rivers.<br />

The city is bordered on the east by the foothills of the Andes Mountains and<br />

on the west by the Pacific Ocean. Lima can be seen directly on the south bank of<br />

the Rímac River, which flows for around 200 km through the Lima Region, before<br />

emptying near Callao – a seaside city and port in the Lima metropolitan area (the largest<br />

metropolitan area of Peru). Lima’s historical centre was declared a UNESCO World Heritage<br />

Site in 1988 owing to its large number of historical buildings dating from the Spanish colonial<br />

era. One of the most notable characteristics of Lima is the barren desert that surrounds the city,<br />

with the sand supporting little to no plant life, with the exception of where water has been artificially<br />

provided. Although Lima is located at a tropical latitude, the cool offshore Humboldt Current<br />

(also known as the Peru Current) produces a year-round temperate climate. The cooling of the coastal<br />

air mass produces thick cloud cover throughout winter and the dense sea mist, known locally as garúa,<br />

often rolls in to blanket the city. In this image, captured on 20 April 2020, several cloud formations<br />

can be seen dotted along the coast. Callao is Peru’s main seaport and home to its main airport, Jorge<br />

Chávez International Airport. Several small boats and vessels can be seen near the port. Callao has<br />

several islands: San Lorenzo Island (currently used as a military base), El Frontón (a former high<br />

security prison), the Cavinzas Islands, and the Palomino Islands, where numerous sea lions and<br />

sea birds live. The Copernicus Sentinel-2 mission consists of a pair of twin satellites that orbit<br />

Earth once every 100 minutes, together imaging a path on Earth’s surface 580 kilometres<br />

wide. The satellites observe in 13 spectral bands – from visible to infrared light – giving<br />

various perspectives on land and vegetation. This means that the mission can<br />

be used to retrieve a wealth of different information about Earth’s surface.<br />

(Source: ESA - Image of the week: "Lima, Peru")<br />

<strong>GEOmedia</strong> n°3-<strong>2021</strong> 25

REPORT<br />

DEEPCUBE: Explainable AI<br />

Pipelines for Big Copernicus Data<br />

by Chiara Gervasi, Alessia Ferrari, Ioannis Papoutsis, Souzana Touloumtzi<br />

DeepCube is a Horizon 2020<br />

project implemented by 9<br />

European partners coordinated<br />

by the National Observatory<br />

of Athens. It will unlock the<br />

potential of big Copernicus data<br />

with Artificial Intelligence and<br />

Semantic Web technologies,<br />

aiming to address problems of<br />

high socio-environmental impact.<br />

Figure 1: DeepCube implementation workflow from technology development to demonstration in Use Cases.<br />

According to the recently<br />

published (19 June<br />

2020) European White<br />

Paper on Artificial Intelligence<br />

(https://ec.europa.eu/info/sites/<br />

default/files/commission-whitepaper-artificial-intelligencefeb2020_en.pdf),<br />

Artificial<br />

Intelligence (AI) is a strategic<br />

technology that, among other<br />

things, “offers important efficiency<br />

and productivity gains<br />

that can strengthen the competitiveness<br />

of European industry<br />

and improve the wellbeing of<br />

citizens”, while “it can also<br />

contribute to finding solutions<br />

to some of the most pressing<br />

societal challenges, including<br />

the fight against climate change<br />

and environmental degradation,<br />

and the challenges linked to<br />

sustainability and demographic<br />

changes”. The same paper<br />

acknowledges Earth Observation<br />

(EO) and space as domains<br />

in which the race for global leadership<br />

is open.<br />

DeepCube (https://deepcubeh2020.eu/)<br />

is a 3-year (January<br />

<strong>2021</strong> - December 2023) Horizon<br />

2020 project that leverages<br />

advances in the fields of AI and<br />

Semantic Web to unlock the<br />

potential of the vast amounts<br />

of data produced by the Copernicus<br />

program. DeepCube has<br />

the goal to address problems of<br />

high environmental and societal<br />

impact while enhancing our understanding<br />

of Earth’s processes<br />

correlated with Climate Change,<br />

in order to respond to the<br />

urgent challenges addressed by<br />

the EU Green Deal. To achieve<br />

this, the project develops an<br />

open, scalable and interoperable<br />

platform, integrating novel<br />

Information and Communication<br />

Technologies such as the<br />

Earth System Data Cube, the<br />

Semantic Cube, the Hopsworks<br />

platform for distributed Deep<br />

Learning, and state-of-the-art<br />

data visualization tools, providing<br />

solutions for all phases of<br />

an EO-based AI pipeline, from<br />

data ingestion and organization<br />

in data cubes, to feature engineering,<br />

semantic reasoning<br />

and visualization. In addition,<br />

DeepCube tests a hybrid modeling<br />

approach for Earth System<br />

Science, combining data-driven<br />

modeling bound by physical<br />

parameters, further enhanced<br />

through explainable AI and<br />

Causality for “physics-aware” AI<br />

applications.<br />

Contextual background<br />

DeepCube contributes to the<br />

European Commission's Destination<br />

Earth, an initiative that<br />

aspires to create a digital model<br />

of the Earth’s physical resources,<br />

to help us plan and prepare for<br />

major environmental degradation<br />

and disasters due to Climate<br />

Change. To support this,<br />

the European Space Agency<br />

has put forward the concept of<br />

Digital Twin Earth to develop a<br />

dynamic, digital replica of our<br />

planet. A model powered by<br />

observations that provides an<br />

accurate representation of the<br />

26 <strong>GEOmedia</strong> n°3-<strong>2021</strong>

REPORT<br />

Figure 2: TRE Altamira’s wide area monitoring over different countries around the world -<br />

the UK, Denmark, France and Japan.<br />

The Copernicus program<br />

The Copernicus Earth Observation program,<br />

providing free, open, and high<br />

quality data about our planet at large<br />

scales, is believed to be a game changer<br />

for both science and the industry. Today,<br />

Copernicus is producing 15 terabytes of<br />

data every day, while every product is<br />

downloaded on average 10 times. However,<br />

the availability of the sheer volume<br />

of Copernicus data outstrips our capacity<br />

to extract meaningful information. That<br />

is why the Earth Observation community<br />

is in need of technology enablers to propel<br />

the development of entirely new applications<br />

at scale.<br />

past, present and future changes<br />

of our planet to support us in<br />

preparing a better response to<br />

future challenges.<br />

We consider DeepCube as a<br />

showcase of the Digital Twin<br />

Earth potential, addressing all<br />

of its elements from data to<br />

infrastructure, to technology,<br />

to Research & Development,<br />

to new business models, with<br />

Artificial Intelligence and big<br />

Copernicus data at its core.<br />

DeepCube is driven by the<br />

scientific and business questions<br />

behind its Use Cases. What makes<br />

its applications different is<br />

that they serve non-traditional<br />

use cases, penetrate untapped<br />

markets, exploit unique datasets<br />

and employ new AI architectures.<br />

The DeepCube Use Cases<br />

Five Use Cases (UCs) have<br />

been designed by DeepCube’s<br />

partners to showcase the innovative<br />

technologies used in this<br />

project: two on business, two<br />

on earth system sciences, and<br />

one on migration.<br />

UC1: Forecasting localized extreme<br />

drought and heat impacts<br />

in Africa<br />

UC2: Climate induced migration<br />

in Africa<br />

UC3: Fire hazard short-term forecasting<br />

in the Mediterranean<br />

UC4a: Automatic volcanic<br />

deformation detection and alerting<br />

UC4b: Deformation trend<br />

change detection on PSI timeseries<br />

for critical infrastructure<br />

monitoring<br />

UC5: Copernicus services for<br />

sustainable and environmentally-friendly<br />

tourism<br />

[UC4 is under the umbrella of<br />

SAR (Synthetic Aperture Radar)<br />

Figure 3: TRE Altamira’s UC4b schematic.<br />

interferometry and consists of the<br />

smaller-scale UC4a on volcanic<br />

risk reduction and the larger-scale<br />

UC4b that integrates measurements<br />

from in-situ geodetic and<br />

other information with InSAR<br />

(Interferometric Synthetic Aperture<br />

Radar) time-series].<br />

The UCs are the core of DeepCube<br />

and drive the development<br />

on both the technology<br />

and the research sides. The<br />

project approach is to co-design<br />

<strong>GEOmedia</strong> n°3-<strong>2021</strong> 27

REPORT<br />

the UCs together with their<br />

beneficiaries and ensure that the<br />

outcomes fit their needs and<br />

decision-making processes.<br />

Drought and heat waves, due<br />

to their frequent occurrence in<br />

the last decade, are expected to<br />

become even more frequent in<br />

the future, as the corresponding<br />

persistent weather situations<br />

become more and more probable.<br />

UC1 puts on the table the<br />

following questions to respond,<br />

using AI on big EO data: Which<br />

are the spatial factors that yield<br />

impact susceptibility versus resilience<br />

to meteorological drought<br />

and heat waves? Can we predict<br />

localized impacts given coarse<br />

scale meteorological information?<br />

Can we employ advanced ML<br />

solutions to model the spatiotemporal<br />

drought impact by combining<br />

this with a physical approach<br />

in a hybrid model? What are<br />

the anticipated long-term effects<br />

of drought and heat?<br />

UC2 aims to uncover how<br />

extreme weather conditions<br />

cause internal displacement and<br />

whether any other drivers are<br />

playing a role, related or not,<br />

to Climate Change. Through<br />

modern observational causal<br />

inference models, UC2 will be<br />

designed to understand, quantify,<br />

and predict migration flow<br />

effects from socio-economic<br />

contextual information as well<br />

as from environmental variables<br />

extracted from EO data.<br />

Wildfires are a very impactful<br />

hazard affecting natural ecosystems<br />

and manmade infrastructures,<br />

causing in extreme cases<br />

human life losses. It is expected<br />

in the future that fire danger<br />

will increase, affecting even<br />

northern latitudes and evergreen<br />

tropical forests. The goal of<br />

UC3 is to model fire hazards<br />

in multiple temporal scales,<br />

providing short-term (e.g.<br />

hourly), mid-term (e.g. weekly,<br />

monthly) and long-term (e.g.<br />

seasonal) predictions of the best<br />

possible accuracy to interested<br />

users.<br />

At any given moment, several<br />

volcanoes worldwide are<br />

erupting, while there are more<br />

than 1,500 volcanoes capable<br />

of reawakening and creating<br />

severe or even catastrophic impacts<br />

to society. Historical data<br />

from eruptions indicate that<br />

they are almost always preceded<br />

by volcanic unrest. Therefore,<br />

early warning based on detected<br />

volcanic unrest could be of<br />

great importance for civil protection<br />

authorities, enhancing<br />

their response effectiveness and<br />

allowing for scientists to deploy<br />

critical in-situ monitoring<br />

equipment to assess volcanic<br />

hazards more accurately. UC4a<br />

adopts a novel DL method,<br />

which has not been explored<br />

before in EO problems, to<br />

detect deformation associated<br />

with volcanic activity using<br />

SAR complex imagery.<br />

Tourism is one of the pillars of<br />

the modern economy. It constitutes<br />

more than 10% of global<br />

GDP. The number of international<br />

tourists is forecasted to<br />

rise to 1,8 billion in 2030, making<br />

it crucial to find efficient<br />

ways to handle this growth,<br />

preserve the fragile destinations,<br />

and adapt to the increasing demand<br />

over limited hospitality<br />

infrastructures. Additionally,<br />

more than 65% of European<br />

travelers have declared that<br />

they are striving to make their<br />

travels more sustainable but do<br />

not find the right information<br />

or the possibility to assess their<br />

environmental footprint.<br />

UC5's goal is to design a pricing<br />

engine for hotel rooms and<br />

tour packages purchases independent<br />

from the major reservation<br />

platforms and incorporate<br />

the environmental dimension<br />

for sustainable tourism.<br />

UC4b- Deformation trend<br />

change detection on PSI time<br />

series for critical infrastructure<br />

monitoring<br />

TRE Altamira (TREA) is a<br />

global leader in InSAR derived<br />

services and a pioneer in<br />

developing new products from<br />

satellite SAR data. Born as an<br />

independent company in 2000,<br />

TRE was funded by Politecnico<br />

of Milan to market the first PSI<br />

(Persistent Scatterer Interferometry)<br />

technique worldwide<br />

and in 2016, it merged with Altamira,<br />

an InSAR service company<br />

too. Since then, TREA<br />

employs advanced InSAR techniques<br />

to measure ground motion<br />

and structural movement<br />

from space. In more than 20<br />

years of experience, TREA has<br />

analyzed over 5,000,000 km2<br />

in the world and carried out<br />

1,000+ projects in various market<br />

sectors such as civil engineering,<br />

oil & gas, mining, and natural<br />

hazards. Several critical infrastructure<br />

projects have been<br />

conducted all over the world to<br />

support engineers during the<br />

phases of planning, designing,<br />

and construction. Today, using<br />

its proprietary SqueeSAR® algorithm,<br />

TREA can provide surface<br />

displacement maps over large<br />

or small areas.<br />

When asked to join the DeepCube<br />

project, TREA was<br />

thrilled to contribute to the<br />

challenge of exploiting the mass<br />

amount of Sentinel-1 SAR data<br />

combined with in-situ geodetic<br />

and other measurements with<br />

the final goal of creating a commercial<br />

service to monitor critical<br />

infrastructure at large scales.<br />

The rationale behind:<br />

The Copernicus Sentinel-1 (S1)<br />

SAR mission has turned out to<br />

be a game changer for the EO<br />

community. This twin platform<br />

constellation provides wide-scale,<br />

systematic (every 6 days) and<br />

free-access imagery over most of<br />

28 <strong>GEOmedia</strong> n°3-<strong>2021</strong>

REPORT<br />

the globe. Any single S1 image<br />

covers a 250x250 km2-area and<br />

is delivered within one hour<br />

from acquisition. This can be<br />

considered as a significant improvement<br />

over existing SAR<br />

systems.<br />

Advanced InSAR technology is<br />

used to produce deformation<br />

maps from satellite SAR imagery<br />

with millimetric-precision.<br />

Thanks to S1 revisit time,<br />

deformation maps can be delivered<br />

to end-users on a regular<br />

basis, providing average velocity<br />

displacement rates of Persistent<br />

Scatter points and their associated<br />

displacement time series.<br />

Each deliverable consists of a<br />

layer of hundreds of thousands<br />

of measurement points and can<br />

be compared to previous layers<br />

to detect ground surface instability<br />

over large areas. The availability<br />

and accessibility to mass<br />

amounts of S1 data, combined<br />

with cloud-based solutions,<br />

enable TREA to deliver nationwide<br />

InSAR measurement<br />

databases providing millions of<br />

measurement points and their<br />

associated time series of displacement<br />

at each update.<br />

How can we help end-users best<br />

understand and make use of this<br />

mass of information?<br />

How can we contribute to the creation<br />

of a novel service that meets<br />

the monitoring requirements of a<br />

specific market sector?<br />

Through the MATTCH project<br />

(ESA Open Call for Science,<br />

2019), TREA has already<br />

implemented Deep Learning<br />

based methodologies to mass<br />

amount of S1 data to detect<br />

changes in time series trends for<br />

data screening purposes. So far,<br />

hotspots can be identified but<br />

no reason about driving mechanisms<br />

for these trend changes is<br />

given to end-users.<br />

With DeepCube and the UC,<br />

TREA intends to further advance<br />

the state of the art reached<br />

in the MATTCH project.<br />

TREA will develop new Deep<br />

Learning architectures for trend<br />

change detection from dense<br />

InSAR point time series- this<br />

time combined with industrial<br />

geodetic (GNSS) and other measurements<br />

to identify clusters<br />

of points sharing key attributes<br />

or features for critical infrastructure<br />

monitoring at a large<br />

scale. An Italian civil engineering<br />

group will contribute to<br />

the development of the UC by<br />

providing in-situ measurements<br />

over sample areas along a strategic<br />

infrastructure in Italy.<br />

Conclusion<br />

DeepCube addresses problems<br />

that require quantitative estimation<br />

of geophysical variables.<br />

For this purpose, a hybrid modeling<br />

approach for geophysical<br />

parameters estimation will be<br />

tested, where data driven modeling<br />

bound by physical models,<br />

AI applications, and Causality<br />

are combined.<br />

DeepCube is exploiting nonspace<br />

data, linking other information<br />

sources such as social<br />

media, industrial and socioeconomic<br />

data to satellite data<br />

in order to create new value<br />

chains.<br />

Also, DeepCube is tackling<br />

AI problems that use satellite<br />

InSAR data. Sentinel-1 SAR<br />

archive is the richest asset that<br />

remains hugely underexploited<br />

by the scientific community<br />

when it comes to AI-based<br />

applications, and DeepCube is<br />

addressing this gap.<br />

The DeepCube platform is a<br />

unique legacy that will be developed<br />

as an open source suitable<br />

to be deployed in different<br />

cloud environments. To our<br />

knowledge, this will be the first<br />

time that such an end-to-end<br />

platform will become available,<br />

tailored for the processing of<br />

big Copernicus data and made<br />

available to the community to<br />

reuse and extend.<br />


Partners:<br />

National Observatory of Athens, Greece<br />

(https://www.noa.gr/)<br />

Max Planck Institute for Biogeochemistry,<br />

Germany (https://www.bgc-jena.mpg.de/<br />

index.php/Main/HomePage)<br />

University of Valencia, Spain (https://<br />

www.uv.es/uvweb/college/en/universityvalencia-1285845048380.html)<br />

Logical Clocks, Sweden (https://www.<br />

logicalclocks.com/)<br />

National and Kapodistrian University of<br />

Athens, Greece (https://en.uoa.gr/)<br />

Gael Systems, France (https://www.gaelsystems.com/)<br />

Tre Altamira, Italy (https://site.tre-altamira.<br />

com/)<br />

Infalia, Greece (http://infalia.gr/)<br />

Murmuration, France (https://murmuration-sas.com/)<br />


Artificial Intelligence, Deep learning,<br />

Machine learning, Earth observation,<br />

Climate change<br />


DeepCube is a 3-year Horizon 2020<br />

project that leverages advances in the fields<br />

of Artificial Intelligence and Semantic Web<br />

to unlock the potential of big Copernicus<br />

data. Its goal is to address problems of high<br />

socio-environmental impact and enhance<br />

our understanding of Earth’s processes<br />

correlated with Climate Change. To achieve<br />

this, the project employs mature ICT<br />

technologies, integrating them into a scalable,<br />

open and interoperable platform that<br />

provides solutions for all phases of an Earth<br />

Observation based AI pipeline. The Deep-<br />

Cube technologies will be demonstrated in<br />

five Use Cases.<br />

AUTHOR<br />

Chiara Gervasi, TRE Altamira<br />

(chiara.gervasi@tre-altamira.com)<br />

Alessia Ferrari, TRE Altamira<br />

(alessia.ferrari@tre-altamira.com)<br />

Ioannis Papoutsis,<br />

National Observatory of Athens<br />

(ipapoutsis@noa.gr)<br />

Souzana Touloumtzi,<br />

National Observatory of Athens<br />

(stouloumtzi@noa.gr)<br />

<strong>GEOmedia</strong> n°3-<strong>2021</strong> 29









Starting from July 20th, ASI will<br />

accept registration requests submitted by the scientific, institutional<br />

and commercial community (only for non-commercial purposes),<br />

both Italian and International, allowing the access to the<br />

SAOCOM products acquired in the geographic zone in which<br />

ASI has full utilization rights (Zone of Exclusivity). It roughly<br />

corresponds to the European territory. Anyone can be part of<br />

the growing community of users of SAOCOM products in the<br />

ASI Zone of Exclusivity through a simple registration operation,<br />

by accepting the License (Terms and Conditions for use of the<br />

products of the SAOCOM mission), releasing a liability declaration<br />

and compiling a membership registration form with the<br />

personal info as well as a brief description of the project in which<br />

the SAOCOM data are intended to be used. For accessing the<br />

products it is sufficient to download the SAOCOM Registration<br />

Data Package and submit via email a registration request. Further<br />

details can be found in the SAOCOM membership guide inside<br />

the above-mentioned package. SAOCOM data will be accessed<br />

and disseminated through a dedicated ASI SAOCOM<br />

portal, based on a customized version of the DHuS system, that<br />

has been originally developed by ESA as the backbone of the EC<br />

Copernicus data distribution to users.<br />

The ASI SAOCOM portal currently contains only a subset of<br />

all the products available in the Zone of Exclusivity but it will be<br />

increasingly populated in next weeks.<br />

Starting from July 20th, ASI will accept registration requests<br />

submitted by the scientific, institutional and commercial community<br />

(only for non-commercial purposes), both Italian and<br />

International, allowing the access to the SAOCOM products<br />

acquired in the geographic zone in which ASI has full utilization<br />

rights (Zone of Exclusivity). It roughly corresponds to the<br />

European territory. Anyone can be part of the growing community<br />

of users of SAOCOM products in the ASI Zone of Exclusivity<br />

through a simple registration operation, by accepting the License<br />

(Terms and Conditions for use of the products of the SAOCOM<br />

mission), releasing a liability declaration and compiling a membership<br />

registration form with the personal info as well as a brief<br />

description of the project in which the SAOCOM data are intended<br />

to be used. For accessing the products it is sufficient to<br />

download the SAOCOM Registration Data Package and submit<br />

via email a registration request. Further details can be found in<br />

the SAOCOM membership guide inside the above-mentioned<br />

package. SAOCOM data will be accessed and disseminated<br />

through a dedicated ASI SAOCOM portal, based on a customized<br />

version of the DHuS system, that has been originally developed<br />

by ESA as the backbone of the EC Copernicus data distribution<br />

to users. The ASI SAOCOM portal currently contains only<br />

a subset of all the products available in the Zone of Exclusivity but<br />

it will be increasingly populated in next weeks.<br />

https://www.asi.it/en/earth-science/saocom/<br />

Works when you do<br />

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Tutto in un unico software<br />

X-PAD Ultimate è un software modulare, facile da usare per lavori<br />

topografici e del cantiere, come rilievi, tracciamenti, catasto,<br />

controlli BIM, strade, mappe, batimetria e GIS.<br />

Il software è disponibile sulla piattaforma Android e porta le<br />

migliori tecnologie direttamente in campo nella tua mano: una<br />

completa visualizzazione 3D ed un sistema CAD per visualizzare e<br />

modificare i disegni, integrazione dei tuoi dati con tutte le tipologie<br />

di mappe, supporti per la realtà aumentata e molto altro.<br />

30 <strong>GEOmedia</strong> n°3-<strong>2021</strong><br />

XPad Ultimate ti assicura la produttività e ti permette di avere una<br />

perfetta integrazione con tutti gli strumenti.<br />

Disponibile in due versioni, una dedicata a chi lavora nel campo<br />

della topografia ed una dedicata alle imprese di costruzioni,<br />

offrendo ad entrambi delle caratteristiche dedicate.<br />

geomax-positioning.it<br />

©2020 Hexagon AB and/or its subsidiaries<br />

and affiliates. All rights reserved.

NEWS<br />



IDS GeoRadar, part of Hexagon, today announces that<br />

it has enhanced IQMaps, its post-processing software<br />

application for advanced GPR data analysis. The updated<br />

version includes new functionalities that improve<br />

the visualisation of radar data and extend the application<br />

fields to void detection and archaeology.<br />

New functionalities in the updated version of IQMaps<br />

improve the visualisation of radar data.<br />

Thanks to these new functionalities, IQMaps now allows:<br />

• Multi-shape area picking for 3D mapping of sinkholes,<br />

inspection chambers and other generic buried<br />

objects<br />

• Automatic exporting of radar map sections with user<br />

defined length and statistical data for comprehensive<br />

reporting functionality<br />

• Overlaying of multiple vector layers such as cadastral,<br />

as-built and DBYD plans onto the tomography drawings<br />

• Improving initial survey positioning by using external<br />

survey data.<br />

The main advantage of multi-shape area picking is the<br />

ability to mark a 3D area both on the B-scan radar map<br />

and the tomography. This feature allows the user to select<br />

areas for 3D mapping of all identified voids and<br />

anomalies.<br />

The software now allows for the simultaneous export<br />

of multiple radar maps with user-defined lengths with<br />

detected features on these maps also exported in .csv<br />

format. This allows for more streamlined reporting and<br />

statistical analysis.<br />

The ability to import multiple overlapping vector layers<br />

such as DBYD plans and as-built drawings over<br />

the tomographic map, greatly aids the user during data<br />

analysis and interpretation.<br />

Users can now import external trajectories such as<br />

Inertial Measurement Unit (IMU) corrected GNSS or<br />

post-processed GNSS data into IQMaps after the survey<br />

is completed. This enables the user to correct positioning<br />

data that may originally have been inaccurate<br />

due to poor floating GNSS signal in tunnels or under<br />

bridges.<br />

“IQMaps has reached a significant milestone in its evolution,“<br />

says Davide Morandi, Director GPR Product<br />

Management at IDS GeoRadar. “With this update,<br />

IQMaps stays ahead of the curve, offering new functionalities<br />

that make 3D mapping even easier and more<br />

efficient for our existing customers, and allows specialists<br />

in new fields to benefit from its seamless mapping<br />

workflow.”<br />

The IQMaps update is rolled out with the new software<br />

version 1.3.<br />

<strong>GEOmedia</strong> n°3-<strong>2021</strong> 31



Acquired by PRISMA satellite (PRecursore IperSpettrale della Missione<br />

Applicativa) on 17 July <strong>2021</strong>, false color image which includes both visible<br />

and infrared light, captured a large portion of burn scar and active<br />

areas. The vegetation appears in shades of red and bare ground in shades<br />

of tan. The burned areas appear black dark and the smoke from active fire<br />

front in blueish. The image, that covers an area of 30 by 30 Kilometers, has<br />

been acquired in the framework of the ASI project “Sviluppo di Prodotti<br />

Iperspettrali Prototipali Evoluti” whose main objective is to define the development<br />

plan for a subset of L3 / L4 value-added products to be retrieved<br />

by means of hyperspectral data processing and to prototype them. The<br />

required data are used for the development of several prototypes among<br />

which the Forest Fire Front that reports the localization of active fires,<br />

based on the ionization at flaming temperature of the Potassium contained<br />

in biomass burning.<br />

Data/Information generated by Stefania Amici-Istituto Nazionale di<br />

Geofisica e Vulcanologia and Volcanology (INGV) under an ASI License<br />

to Use; Original PRISMA Product - © ASI – (<strong>2021</strong>). All rights reserved<br />



IQMAPS EN-<br />


Two global leaders<br />

in Geospatial and<br />

Earth Observation<br />

data and services,<br />

e-GEOS, an Italian<br />

Space Agency (ASI-<br />

20%) and Telespazio<br />

(80%) company,<br />

and ISI (ImageSat<br />

International), a<br />

world leader in<br />

space-based intelligence<br />

solutions,<br />

have announced a<br />

partnership to form<br />

the world’s most capable<br />

commercial<br />

ELECTRO Optical-SAR earth observation satellite constellation.<br />

e-GEOS and ISI have established a strategic alliance, by<br />

bringing together the world-class satellite assets of both companies<br />

to form a High Revisit- Ultra High Resolution EO-<br />

SAR constellation that will propose to the market the best<br />

assets synergy to match the market's ever evolving operational<br />

needs.<br />

The virtual joint constellation is presently comprised out<br />

of 8 ultra-high-performance satellites data including five<br />

COSMO-SkyMed and COSMO-SkyMed second generation<br />

dual use SAR satellites - owned by the Italian Space<br />

Agency (ASI) and the Italian Ministry of Defence, for which<br />

e-GEOS is exclusive global distributor worldwide - and ISI<br />

three EROS Next Generation ELECTRO Optical ultra-highresolution<br />

satellites.<br />

This one of a kind constellation is envisioned to dramatically<br />

expand in the coming years through the launch of new<br />

missions including additional COSMO-SkyMed Second<br />

Generation satellites and two EROS C ELECTRO Optical<br />

ultra-high-resolution satellites and two EROSAR high resolution<br />

satellites by ISI.<br />

The two companies will be able to offer their existing customer<br />

base, as well as future customers, a natural expansion<br />

through the access to world class intelligence gathering assets.<br />

Combining satellites with different sensing technologies<br />

launched into traditional Polar orbits and mid inclination orbits,<br />

to ensure High Revisit – Ultra High-Resolution imaging<br />

capabilities throughout day & night time and in all weather<br />

conditions.<br />

Thanks to this agreement, the competitiveness of the two<br />

companies grows and consolidates their industrial capacity,<br />

leveraging on respective business footprint world- wide and<br />

technological complementarity, specifically to offer services<br />

and information solutions to Defense & Intelligence market.<br />

“A new collaboration perspective within a broader Federative<br />

horizon is opening up new market possibilities by relying on<br />

the best performing satellite systems,” said Paolo Minciacchi,<br />

e-GEOS CEO and Director of the Geoinformation Line of<br />

Business of Telespazio.<br />

“By bringing together the satellite systems, past experience,<br />

talent and expertise of both companies, we have literally formed<br />

one of the world's most capable commercial intelligence<br />

gathering capabilities, which was until now only in the<br />

hands Super-Powers. I am confident that our alliance with<br />

e-GEOS will empower our customers by providing access to<br />

the world’s most capable commercial satellite constellation.”<br />

said Noam Segal, Chief Executive officer of ISI.<br />

32 <strong>GEOmedia</strong> n°3-<strong>2021</strong>

NEWS<br />

Blending the Science of Geography<br />

and Technology of GIS<br />

www.esriitalia.it<br />

<strong>GEOmedia</strong> n°3-<strong>2021</strong> 33





The European GNSS systems (EGNOS and Galileo), in addition<br />

to GPS, are capable of ensuring drones to perform safe<br />

satellite-based approach procedures, a capability required to<br />

include and integrate drones in controlled airspace.<br />

This has been demonstrated during campaign of the ECARO<br />

(Egnos Civil Aviation ROadmap) project, performed at<br />

Grottaglie Airport in Italy.<br />

Coordinated by ENAV, the Italian air navigation service provider,<br />

and jointly developed by the DTA - Apulian Aerospace<br />

District, Planetek Italia, Ums Skeldar and Airgreen, the<br />

ECARO project (EGNOS Civil Aviation Roadmap) is a<br />

multidisciplinary project whose main objective is the adoption<br />

of European satellite navigation systems GNSS (Global<br />

Navigation Satellite Systems) EGNOS and Galileo for all civil<br />

aviation applications like fixed wings operation, drones and rotorcraft<br />

emergency operations. The project is co-financed by<br />

EUSPA (European Union Agency for the Space Programmes).<br />

ECARO will contribute to define the roadmap for ENAC’s<br />

advanced air mobility and will support the development of<br />

a national experimental research center for urban air mobility,<br />

and concurrently will provide benchmarks and services<br />

for both the implementation of Grottaglie spaceport and the<br />

Drone Living Lab of Bari Municipality.<br />

The flight test campaign on satellite procedures tested the application<br />

of civil aviation flight procedures also by using a Swiss<br />

UMS Skeldar drone, so to demonstrate their integration in an<br />

airport environment and the benefits obtained from the exploitation<br />

of the European GNSS systems EGNOS and Galileo.<br />

To monitor GNSS signal quality, Planetek Italia has tested a<br />

radiofrequency spectrum monitoring system at airports, which<br />

could improve the safety and security of UAS operations.<br />

Thanks to the ECARO project, it was demonstrated that the<br />

European GNSS systems (EGNOS and Galileo), in addition<br />

to GPS, are capable of ensuring drones to perform safe satellite-based<br />

approach procedures, a capability required to include<br />

and integrate drones in controlled airspace.<br />

www.geoforall.it/kyara<br />

Product features & benefits:<br />

> Easy, one-touch scan function<br />

> 3D mosaic imaging without position info<br />

> Easily combined with laser scan imagery<br />

> Compact size fits into tight spaces<br />

> Operates in low and zero visibility conditions<br />

> Standard Ethernet/RS485 interface<br />

> Easy Windows-based software<br />

> Leica Cyclone data compatible<br />

> Sector and spherical scans<br />


SONAR<br />

BlueView’s BV5000-1350 3D mechanical scanning sonar creates<br />

high resolution imagery of underwater areas, structures,<br />

and objects. With the touch of a button, the 3D mechanical<br />

scanning sonar creates 3D point clouds of an underwater scene<br />

with minimal training required. These compact, lightweight<br />

units are easily deployed on a tripod or an ROV. The scanning<br />

sonar head and integrated mechanical pan and tilt mechanism<br />

generate both sector scans and spherical scan data. For the first<br />

time, get 3D laser-like scanning capabilities underwater, even<br />

in low and zero visibility conditions and seamless integration<br />

with traditional laser scan imagery.<br />

Applications<br />

>3D site survey<br />

>3D structure inspection<br />

>Rig decommissioning<br />

>Bridge inspections<br />

>Underwater metrology<br />

For more information contact Codevintec Italiana www.codevintec.it<br />

www.geoforall.it/kya6p<br />

34 <strong>GEOmedia</strong> n°3-<strong>2021</strong>

NEWS<br />

High performance<br />

technologies<br />

Photo: MTS Engineering<br />

Sale, rental, training, technical assistance<br />

Coastal and marine surveys<br />

Multibeams, SSS, SBP, magnetometers,<br />

hydrographic drones …<br />

3D imaging<br />

terrestrial, underground, underwater,<br />

coastal and all of them integrated,<br />

even dynamic …<br />

High precision positioning<br />

and navigation<br />

GNSS, IMU, underwater systems …<br />

Underground surveys<br />

GPR, seismographs, DC resistivity meters,<br />

clinometers …<br />

Seismic monitoring<br />

seismometers, Strong Motion,<br />

Early Warning networks, tiltmeters …<br />


Tecnologie per le Scienze della Terra e del Mare<br />

tel. +39 02 4830.2175 | info@codevintec.it | www.codevintec.it<br />

<strong>GEOmedia</strong> n°3-<strong>2021</strong> 35




United Utilities is responsible for water and wastewater services<br />

in the North West of England<br />

and adopted recently Rheticus® Network Alert system of<br />

Planetek Italia because it can help provide a better service<br />

to its customers, improve its activities, and prioritise and<br />

optimise maintenance spending. Monitoring the infrastructures'<br />

stability is an important activity to ensure people's<br />

safety, environmental protection, and the safeguarding of<br />

assets at all stages of the life cycle of infrastructures, from<br />

design to production, management, and maintenance.<br />

Rheticus® Network Alert improves inspection planning<br />

and efficiency of water and sewer networks, providing<br />

actionable reports of critical pipe segments to prioritise<br />

inspection activities and improve inspection efficiency.<br />

The service enables predictive maintenance to prevent<br />

structural failures by using ground subsidence as an indicator<br />

of the likelihood of failure. The millimetre-scale<br />

ground movements are calculated, and quarterly updated,<br />

through the satellite's radar data processing.<br />

The service offers an update and complete view of the<br />

entire pipeline network through actionable reports and<br />

GeoAnalytics. Inspections and maintenance activities are<br />

thus scheduled more efficiently and simplified as a whole.<br />

This activity led utilities to unlock cost-effective watersupply<br />

and sewer network management. Consequently,<br />

customers receive a series of benefits, such as:<br />

- Avoid usual inconveniences derived by a network failure<br />

(e.g. traffic, road interruptions)<br />

- Bill reduction thanks to the predictive maintenance,<br />

which avoid utilities to pay a considerable expense for repairing<br />

a failure<br />

By two years from now, United Utilities foresee a spread<br />

adoption of the predictive maintenance approach by utilities<br />

and, thus, of Rheticus® Network Alert.<br />

www.geoforall.it/kyar9<br />

• An improved version of the backpack, designed for the<br />

best ergonomy to increase the comfort of the operator.<br />

• A high resolution 360° panoramic camera, compatible<br />

with the dedicated car mount and the backpack, to document<br />

the environment with incredible image details.<br />

The Scanfly family is the payload lidar designed to be multipurpose,<br />

easy, and ready to use in just a few steps in drone,<br />

car, and backpack mode.<br />

Easy to use has always been the Scanfly motto.<br />

This new car mounting kit has been completely redesigned<br />

under this philosophy and allows deploying the Scanfly in<br />

combination with the panoramic camera kit quickly and efficiently.<br />

Fixing the plate to the car roof requires less than a<br />

minute with the three vacuum cup mounts. Scanfly and the<br />

camera are installed and removed with quick-release mechanisms<br />

and simple wing nuts.<br />


3D TARGET is pleased to announce the release of new<br />

add-ons, compatible with all Scanfly models, that were specifically<br />

designed with this philosophy in mind.<br />

Topics:<br />

www.geoforall.it/kyaxd<br />

• A brand new car mounting kit series, allowing for an even<br />

easier and repeatable installation of Scanfly on the roof of<br />

any car available in the market today, it will take less than<br />

a minute<br />

36 <strong>GEOmedia</strong> n°3-<strong>2021</strong>

NEWS<br />

<strong>GEOmedia</strong> n°3-<strong>2021</strong> 37

AGENDA<br />

13-15 Settembre <strong>2021</strong><br />

10th AIT International<br />

Conference<br />

Cagliari www.geoforall.it/<br />

ky3x4<br />

27 – 30 Settembre<br />

GIScience <strong>2021</strong><br />

<strong>2021</strong> Poznan (Poland) www.<br />

geoforall.it/kfrkk<br />

21 - 23 Settembre<br />

INTERGEO <strong>2021</strong><br />

Hannover (Germany) www.<br />

intergeo.de<br />

6 - 8 Ottobre <strong>2021</strong><br />

DRONITALY - Working<br />

with Drones<br />

Bologna (Italy) www.<br />

geoforall.it/kfy44<br />

25 - 29 Ottobre <strong>2021</strong>,<br />

Inspire Conference <strong>2021</strong><br />

ONLINE<br />

www.geoforall.it/kya9h<br />

24-25 Novembre <strong>2021</strong><br />

GEO Business <strong>2021</strong><br />

London (UK) www.<br />

geoforall.it/kf4yh<br />

18 - 21 Dicembre <strong>2021</strong><br />

ICC- International<br />

Cartographic Conference<br />

Firenze www.geoforall.it/<br />

kyk8k<br />

<br />

<br />

<br />

<br />

<br />

<br />

<br />

<br />

LEICA BLK360°<br />

The imaging laser scanner simplifies<br />

the way spaces are measured, designed<br />

and documented .<br />

New dimension in measurements technology<br />

❚❚Leica BLK360° captures the world around you with full-colour panoramic images overlaid on a<br />

high-accuracy point cloud.<br />

❚❚Simple to use with just the single push of one button, the BLK360 is the smallest and lightest of its kind.<br />

❚❚Anyone who can operate an iPad can now capture the world around them with high resolution 3D<br />

panoramic images.<br />

❚❚Using the ReCap Pro mobile app, the BLK360° streams image and point cloud data to iPad. The app<br />

filters and registers scan data in real time.<br />

❚❚After capture, ReCap Pro enables point cloud data transfer to a number of CAD, BIM, VR and AR<br />

applications.<br />

❚❚Teorema Milano can offer you a solution “all-inclusive” that includes: BLK360° with software ReCap<br />

Pro, Ipad Pro 12,9”, training courses with specialist.<br />

Contact us, you will discover much more.




Veranstalter / Host: DVW e.V.<br />

Ausrichter Conference / Conference organiser: DVW GmbH<br />

Ausrichter Expo / Expo organiser: HINTE GmbH<br />


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