99% Of Earths Surface Topographically Mapped

The BBC is reporting that NASA and the Japanese Trade ministry has completed topographically mapping 99% of the earths surface.

The awesome thing? The sample rate is 30m! Let’s do some math.

Surface area of earth: 5.10072 × 10^14 m^2

99% of earths surface area: 5.0497128 × 10^14 m^2

If there is a sample taken every 30 meters, than there should be approx 1.6832376 × 10^15 samples.

That’s a pretty huge database! Granted, you can make some assumptions. For example, that the majority of the earth is covered in water and thus has an elevation of 0m. So no need to keep track of the elevation of every point on the ocean.

The great thing about this new data is that aviation databases for terrain avoidance can be increased in accuracy!

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  1. Hi Blake, doing a run to CYKZ from Brampton on Sunday, then hoping to go down the east corridor for a city tour then making way back to CNC3 via west corridor. Trying to set this up for Sunday July 5th evening. Let me know if you’re interested would like someone experienced in the east area to sit right seat. I’ll be flying C172 RG constant speed (yeah flys as fast as the old seminoles but on one engine!!!). Cheers.

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