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India launches Bhuvan, rival to Google Earth

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posted on Aug, 16 2009 @ 03:33 AM

India has launched a rival to Google Earth, the search engine's hugely popular satellite imagery service.

The online tool, dubbed Bhuvan (Sanskrit for Earth), has been developed by the Indian Space Research Organisation (Isro). Its debut comes as India redoubles its efforts to reap profits from its 45-year-old state-sponsored space programme, criticised by some as a drain on a country where 700 million people live on $US2 a day or less.

The new site also follows in the slipstream of the country's first moon probe, Chandrayaan-1, which successfully reached the lunar surface last November.

Bhuvan uses a network of Indian satellites to create a high-resolution, birds-eye view of India that is accessible at no cost online and will compete with Google Earth.

Thought this would be of interest to many here in this forum. I am bout to try to download this new Bhuvan and give it a twirl ..

Although it seems to be centralised on India, as the report suggests, I think this will be a great way of discovering this country and enabling us to have a good close look at certain parts of India etc.

The main Bhuvan site can be found here

# Operating System: Windows XP/Vista; RAM: 512MB; Hard Disk: 2GB free space; Network Speed: 256 Kbits/sec; Graphics Card: 3D-capable with 32MB of VRAM; Screen: 1280x1024, 32-bit True Color;
# To browse Bhuvan, you require the Bhuvan Plug-in which can be downloaded from this website, after registration and you will also need DirectX 9.0 or higher version ( and MS .NET framework 2.0 or above for installing the plug-in. Please note that the Bhuvan Plug-in can be installed with administrative privileges only.

Bhuvan can take closer pictures of the Indian Subcontinent as compared to the Google Earth.

Bhuvan is capable of taking a zoom level of up to 10 meters, while Google Earth features a zoom level of up to 200 meters.

posted on Aug, 16 2009 @ 04:06 AM
I am curious about two things regarding this imagery project:

1) I wonder if there will be any blacked out area locations on these Earth maps India is putting up on Bhuvan's website?

2) Secondly, does anyone believe that the Chandrayaan-1 will have air brushed mozaic images of craft/structures or will the truth about what may or may not be lying on the surface of the moon be plainly visible?

I'll sit in the back seat for this to unfold with arms crossed, but EyEs wide opened.

posted on Aug, 16 2009 @ 06:01 AM
Mandatory registration, Windows-only and IE-only, hmm...
I think I'll wait some more before trying it.

They should have done it like this one for Italy: Visual
(click "Foto" for the satellite view, then if you zoom in enough, high-detail (30-50 cm/pixel) photos will be showed for most locations)

[edit on 2009/8/16 by Shirakawa]

posted on Aug, 16 2009 @ 09:15 AM
i would use it if they didnt airbrush ufos and aliens out of their photo database

posted on Aug, 16 2009 @ 10:44 AM
reply to post by Extralien

Hey, my Google Earth is censored on the place where is the possible Himmalaya UFO base, can you look up for me.

posted on Aug, 16 2009 @ 11:03 AM
Well I've just tried it out and I have to say I'm rather dissapointed.

I'm not sure which parts of India are supoosed to be at a 10 Meter zoom level but from what I can tell so far, it doesn't even come close to Google Earth.

I'll keep my eye on this thread though incase anyone else figures out how to use this to it's full potential.

posted on Aug, 16 2009 @ 12:24 PM
reply to post by Shirakawa

According to this...

Bhuvan is designed to be as bandwidth-friendly as possible. However, it is dependent on continuously downloading a large amount of imagery. Consequently, the faster your connection, the better the program will perform. If you have a slow connection, Bhuvan will download imagery correspondingly slowly, but it will (eventually) download everything at the maximum available resolution. Depending on the number of concurrent users on over servers and the kind of bandwidth at client end the ultimate speed of visualisation will be decided. This is a beta release, however with more learnings we will be able to make things more comfortable for all types of users.

That may explain a bit as to why it is all still a bit poorly in its operation.
They have made it so that many of the people of India who are lucky enough to be able to access the internet can get a view of their country.

This is alos a beta release so I'm sure it will improve over time.
Let's hope so as I'm looking forward to seeing what this is capable of doing.

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