NASA's Public Affairs office made the following release last week (6 Sept., 1998) .

RELEASE: 98-159

PROJECTS SELECTED FOR COMMERCIAL USE OF REMOTE SENSING DATA

The Commercial Remote Sensing program office at NASA's Stennis Space Center, MS, has selected ten projects that could lead to new commercial uses of advanced sensors. The projects are being developed through the Earth Observations Commercial Applications Program-Hyperspectral (EOCAP-Hyperspectral).

The program is designed to increase the use of NASA technology for gathering and analyzing information about the Earth through sensors mounted on aircraft or satellites. EOCAP-Hyperspectral will define the technology gaps that prohibit or impede the use of hyperspectral data and recommend solutions for filling those gaps.

"This is the type of partnership between NASA and value-added industry that the NASA Earth Science program is forging. We want to emphasize investments of NASA sponsored technologies to demonstrate benefits of our program towards solving practical societal problems while promoting a healthy commercial remote sensing industry in the U.S.," said Dr. Ghassem Asrar, Associate Administrator for Earth Sciences, NASA Headquarters, Washington, DC.

EOCAP-Hyperspectral is managed by the Commercial Remote Sensing program office at Stennis. Its role in commercial activities is to provide financial and technical support to companies for two to three years in areas of remote sensing activities where there is substantial market risk in matching science and technology with commercial demand.

The projects support technical, market and business innovation to develop new products or services that serve emerging domestic and international markets. Selected proposals, in addition to high technical competence, typically exhibit the following traits: strong business and marketing plans; product advisory boards to guide the product and or service development; and substantial financial commitments to the projects by the companies.

The recipients of the 1998 EOCAP-Hyperspectral project awards are:
Eastman Kodak - Rochester, NY
United States Department of Agriculture - Beltsville, MD
Yellowstone Ecosystem Studies - Bozeman, MT
Applied Analysis - Billerica, MA
Cal State-Monterey Bay - Seaside, CA
Boeing Information, Space & Defense Systems - Seattle, WA
GDE Systems, Inc. - San Diego, CA
MTL Systems, Inc. - Beavercreek, OH
Opto Knowledge Systems, Inc. (OKSI) - Torrance, CA
Spectral International - Arvada, CO

The overall focus of the program is to expand the acceptance and use of remote sensing technology in the marketplace. Historically, the program has emphasized product development from a technical perspective. The program's new direction is to ally market knowledge with technical capability to guide product development based on customers' needs. EOCAP responds to known buyer needs by collaborating with commercial firms to develop enhanced geographic information products, incorporating advanced remote sensing and associated technologies.

The program is sponsored by NASA's Earth Science enterprise which studies the total Earth system and demonstrates the benefits of new technologies and scientific knowledge through practical applications.

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