CIMMYT from space

August 11, 2006

1CIMMYT headquarters is visible from space as these pictures illustrate. One sunny, dry season day a couple of years ago (we don’t know the exact date) a satellite photographed CIMMYT headquarters. The resolution is so good that you can read the lettering on the side of the reservoir. Google Earth is a relatively new application available on the Internet that you can use to get a bird’s-eye view of anywhere on earth. The basic software is free but be sure you have a broadband connection before trying to use it. The latitude and longitude for the CIMMYT reservoir are: 19°31’56.71″N by 98°50’39.63″W.

Dave Hodson at CIMMYT’s Geographic Information Systems lab says Google Earth is more than a toy. “It’s a fantastic tool to show people what GIS is about,” he says. “And we are using it more and more to check data we have, for example about roads and infrastructure in southern Africa against real images of the locations.” Hodson sees many more uses for the tool in the future, including having it as part of the Global Rust Initiative pathogen monitoring system.