ESA title


  • ACTIVITYFeasibility Study
  • STATUSCompleted
  • THEMATIC AREASafety & Security

Objectives of the service

The objective of the Feasibility Study is to investigate and assess  the technical feasibility and financial viability of a service that combines remote sensing, aerial platform and in-situ sensors to improve the monitoring of dam and dikes in Vietnam.  

Users and their needs

The following reference users and stakeholders support this study:

  • Centre of Water Management and Climate Change (WACC). The WACC is a part of Vietnam National University HCMC (VNU-HCM).
  • The Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development (MARD). Many interviews with MARD and its underlying departments were conducted in the last two years.
  • Central Project Office. The CPO implements projects on irrigation, drainage and water resources.
  • VIMECO which is a large company building and operating many dams in Vietnam.
  • Private Dam owners. A large part of the 6,000 dams in Vietnam are maintained by private owners.

Service/ system concept

The DDM aims at providing better information (in near-real time) for dam and dike maintenance and flood management. An internet portal will display for the dams and dikes under monitoring the following parameters:

  • Indication of weak dam and dikes (probability of breaches)
  • Prediction of  flood effects and impacts: damage and loss of lives due to weak dam and dikes
  • Planning for intensifying maintenance or undertake structural measures on high-risk locations (based on a risk assessment; probability x effects)
  • Information dissemination for flood disaster management: flood propagation over time, availability roads, evacuation routes, vulnerable objects such as hospitals

Space Added Value

Earth Observation sensors are used to create Digital Elevation Maps of large areas. Also, InSAR can be used to frequently measure deformation of dams and dikes. Real-time local measurements can be transmitted to a server using satellite communication. These measurements require positioning of their location, for a Global Navigation Satellite System (GNSS) is used.

Current Status

The Feasibility Study has been concluded in April 2015. The most significant achievements of the project are presented below.

The possible users and potential clients have been identified, of which the most important are the Vietnamese Ministry of Agricultural and Rural Development (MARD) and the related Dike Department. In two dozen interviews with these possible users their needs and requirements have been discussed. These have been summarized in nine major User Requirements (UR).

During the feasibility study the concept of the Dam And Dike Monitor has been further elaborated. This resulted in the definition of two services: The Large Scale Map Services (LSMS) and the Risk Assessment and Monitoring Services (RAMS). For both these services prototypes have been developed. 

Both services have proven to be technically feasible. They include state-of-the-art technologies that have proven to be very useful for the safety of dams and dikes. A cost-benefit analysis has been performed to show the commercial potential of both services. 

Beside the necessary improvement of underlying technologies some non-technical constraints have been identified that need to be overcome for the services to become commercially viable:
- Obtaining commitment of the end user
- Finding a Vietnamese partner
- Getting third party funding

Prime Contractor(s)

Status Date

Updated: 03 June 2015