2015 saw a growth of intentional destruction of heritage sites in the Middle East. In the light of international media reports in March 2015 that Nimrud was being methodically destroyed by the Islamic State (IS) with bulldozers and explosives, DAI contacted EUSI to request a combination of new and archive imagery so they could assess the reports. With the help of DLR’s Department Geo-Risks and Civil Security in the German Remote Sensing Data Center (DFD) they analysed the imagery to understand the scope of the destruction. The WorldView-2 40cm imagery supplied by European Space Imaging revealed singular details that helped experts to assess the situation. Their findings are part of the case study “VHR Imagery Enables Archaeologists to Safely Assess Heritage Site Destruction” which can be found on European Space Imaging’s website.
“Without the satellite imagery, we would not have been able to confirm when the major destruction took place” stated Margarete Van Ess, Deputy Director of the German Archaeological Institute (DAI) Orient Department, Germany.
The German Archaeological Institute are forerunners in using space technology and continue to prove the value of using satellite imagery to help protect cultural heritage. They have used remote sensing since the early 2003 for monitoring activity in hard to reach world heritage sites especially those which are located in conflict zones.
Read the case study
About European Space Imaging
European Space Imaging (EUSI) is the ‘go to’ company in Europe if you are looking for very high-resolution satellite data. They always offer customers access to the highest resolution imagery available. Their current ’best’ offering is 30 cm data from the DigitalGlobe WorldView-3 satellite. EUSI also operate a multi-mission ground station to provide direct satellite tasking. This enables optimized image collection strategies, flexibility and real-time weather assessments for new collections. With a reputation for expert and personalized customer service EUSI has been providing tailored VHR imagery solutions from their Munich headquarters to meet the diverse project requirements of their customer base since 2002.
About German Archaeological Institute
The German Archaeological Institute (DAI), based in Berlin, performs fundamental archaeological research around the world with the goal of deepening the understanding of historical cultures. DAI personnel, once based in Baghdad but relocated to Berlin due to instability, began experimenting with satellite imagery in 2003 to monitor cultural heritage sites in the Middle East for evidence of looting and other damage.
About German Aerospace Centre
The Department Geo-Risks and Civil Security of the German Remote Sensing Data Center (DFD) is based in Oberpfaffennhofen near Munich. It is part of the German Aerospace Center (DLR), the national aeronautics and space research centre of the Federal Republic of Germany. The Department has the goal of eveloping thematically relevant information products based on earth observation data, integrating them into IT systems, and operating and continuously optimizing customized user services.