Cell for

Climate Change Research and Impact Study (CRAIST)



Cell for Climate Change Research and Impact Study (CRAIST) is a satellite based Geoinformation system with satellite technology and Geospatial technology.

 CRAIST Objectives

The objective are to make effective contribution to climate change researches through capacity building on satellite RS with subsequent study, investigation and analysis on the phenomena & consequences in important geo-disciplinary areas. The project has been articulated around the important objectives as given below:

§ Development of satellite based integrated geoinformation acquisition, analysis & management system for multi-disciplinary researches on climate change and global warming using the latest development of multispectral-multisensor technology.

§ Equip SPARRSO with adequate & most modernized remote sensing Lab facilities including space-borne monitoring system, GPS-GIS based geospatial technological tools supported with latest ground-based instruments.

§ Carry out researches & studies on climate change issues & analysis of the consequences in various mutually interlinked geodisciplinary areas including agriculture, forest, water & environment with special focus on the state & evolving characteristics of the major ecosystem components.

§ Enhancement of understanding on climate change phenomena & their multidisciplinary consequences in the country.

§ Establish an Education-Training Unit at SPARRSO on climate change issues using RS-GIS-GPS technologies. 

§ Establish SPARRSO as a Center of Excellence for researches and studies on climate change, vulnerability & consequences using RS-GIS-GPS Technology.

Climate Change

§ Threatening consequences of climate change, global warming, sea level rise phenomena imposed great challenges to the living world.

§ Crisis of food, degradation of environment, intensification of natural hazards like flood, cyclone, storm surge, river erosion, drought etc. appeared to be very much threatening.

§ Human intervention substantially modified the state, composition & properties of the Earth surface & its atmosphere.

§ Greater efforts to be deployed to understand the phenomena, identify factors & quantify consequences requiring a potential monitoring tool.

§ Development of Remote Sensing (RS) technology significantly improved our capability to monitor various land-surface processes.

§ Proper utilization of RS-GIS-GPS technology has to be ensured for sustainable development & human safety-security.


Understanding the Climate Change Problem

Scale, intensity and persistence together which human activities have affected the Earth and its environment is a subject of continuing researches giving rise to many burning issues like global warming, snow melting, sea level rise, increased CO2 in the atmosphere etc.

Earth’s Radiation Budget

Solar radiation is considered to be the main sources of energy at the Earth surface. The interaction of solar radiation with the atmosphere while passing through it and absorption, scattering and transmission afterward determines the energy balance condition at the Earth surface. Major portion of the received energy correspond to the visible range of electromagnetic spectrum.

Surface Albedo & Landcover

§ Radiation characteristics of the Earth surface are influenced by the properties and composition of surface materials, vegetation, soil moisture content etc. as demonstrated through surface albedo.

§ Vegetation cover and soil properties influence the transfer of solar energy from the ground to the atmosphere, as infrared radiation or as latent (evapotranspiration) heat – soil moisture content influences surface temperatures strongly through the energy used in evaporating water.

§ Terrestrial vegetation influences local surface albedo strongly, potentially affecting not only regional, but even global climate.

§ Removal of vegetation from a given area results in exposed soil offering an increased surface albedo.


Greenhouse Effect & Global Warming

§ The Earth surface is heated by visible and infrared light from the Sun.

§ The heated surface emits infrared light.

§ The small amount of greenhouse gases (H2O, CO2) traps (absorb and re-emit) the infrared radiation, increasing the temperature of the atmosphere. This traps part of the IR radiation between ground and the lower 10 km of the atmosphere.

§ CO2 cycle acts as a thermostat regulating the temperature of the Earth. The increased CO2 concentration strengthens the greenhouse effect and warms the planet.


Carbon Fixation

§ Climate change and forests are intrinsically linked. Changes in global climate are already stressing forests through higher mean annual temperatures, altered precipitation patterns and more frequent and extreme weather events.

§ Forests produce trap and store carbon dioxide, playing a major role in mitigating climate change.

§ Forests can become sources of the greenhouse gas, carbon dioxide when they are destroyed or over-harvested and burned that, in turn, contributes to global warming and climate change.

§ Vegetation covers alleviate these changes by removing carbon dioxide from the atmosphere and converting it during photosynthesis to carbon, which they then "store" in the form of wood and vegetation, a process referred to as "carbon sequestration."

Climate Change Impacts on Water Cycle

§ Climate change is expected to intensify the hydrological cycle of the Earth & produces many changes in water cycle.

§ The hydrological processes precipitation, evaporation, water storage and runoff, affect soil moisture, groundwater resources, river flows, and lake levels.

§ Increasing atmospheric concentrations of greenhouse gases, mainly carbon dioxide, have led to a warming at the surface.

§ Consequence of a warmer ocean surface is a larger vapor-pressure difference between the sea surface & adjacent atmosphere.

§ This would enhance the evaporation rate, and hence increase the other components of the hydrologic cycle.

§ For instance, a global warming by 4°C (7.2°F) is expected to increase global precipitation by about 10% & increase is more likely to come as heavier rainfall, rather than as more frequent rainfalls or falls of longer duration.

§ The interaction between the hydrological cycle and the cycle of erosion and sedimentation has long been recognized.

§ Study of geo-chemical cycles of carbon, nitrogen and sulphur has revealed the importance of their linkage to the hydrological cycle.


Monitoring under CRAIST

§ The threat of climate change has increased interest in climate research, focusing on observing, understanding & modeling the five interconnected components that comprise the climate system: atmosphere, oceans, land surface, cryosphere, and biosphere.

§ Changes in the world’s climate and the influence of human activity on our planet are of key concern.

§ This need for scientific observations of ever increasing accuracy & complexity is placing stringent demands on the accuracy of global observing systems and on the traceability of measurement results to internationally agreed units of measurement and standards.

§ Furthermore, the need to accurately interpret small changes in long-term environmental data series requires measurement standards with well-characterized uncertainties & well-monitored & maintained stabilities.

§ In particular, the capabilities of spatially continuous regular and repeated observation over large area, easy access to any geographical position are the inherent advantages of satellite remote sensing.

v Satellite-based observation tools.

v Time series geospatial observation.

v Necessary remote sensing in-situ data collection platform.

v Algorithms for data processing, analysis & information retrieval.