Inderscience Publishers

An overview on the use of satellite communications for disaster management and emergency response

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In disaster situations, communication is vital to organise and coordinate Search and Rescue (SAR) operations. In some disasters it may not be possible to use the existing terrestrial communication network due to damaged infrastructure, broken cables and/or energy sources, overload on the network, or non–existing communication network. To overcome the damaged/congested network problem and support the SAR activities to mitigate effects of the disaster, satellite communication is used, since it provides a robust, reliable, flexible, easy to deploy capacity, high bandwidth, and a long coverage range. This paper is an overview of the use of satellite communications for the disaster management and emergency response. This paper is intended to be a general resource and capacity building for the disaster managers and responders.

Keywords: satellite communications, search and rescue, SAR, emergency response, disaster response, terrestrial communications, communications networks, damaged infrastructures, broken cables, energy sources, network overload, non–existing networks, damaged networks, congested networks, high bandwidth, long coverage, disaster managers, disaster responders, Tohoku earthquake, Great East Japan Earthquake, earthquakes, natural disasters, tsunamis, Fukushima Daiichi, nuclear disasters, nuclear power plants, disaster management, emergency management

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