URGED - Rezatec Urban Resilience Geo Dataportal (URGED)

URGED addresses an increasing global requirement for the provision of better predictive decision support tools for urban infrastructure managers to enable cities to become more resilient to the environmental and social threats. These Earth Observation (EO) derived Data Products, analytics and monitoring tools identify where there is the likely high risk of subsidence and flood risk via online, interactive maps, to improve infrastructure planning and management and reduce operational costs.

This new opportunity has emerged through the escalating need for cities to become more resilient, and the availability of new satellite data sources such as Sentinel 1 and 2, combined with the evolution of Rezatec’s EO analytical capabilities, such as SAR interferometry.

Combined with the delivery of subscription based access to dynamically updated analytics as a service, this represents a new commercial model that has greater scalability and price advantages than current consulting based approaches to managing urban subsidence and flooding issues.

The project aims to have a profound contribution to city-regional economic, environmental and human wellbeing by demonstrating the value of space data in enabling strategic investment and decision making to support more resilient development pathways.

Users and their needs

Targeted user communities and their uses for URGED are:

1. Water Utilities, who use URGED for:

a) Identification of soil subsidence hazard;

b) Identification of pipeline segment susceptible to land surface movement ;

c) Forecasting future land surface change and pipeline vulnerability.

2. Urban Infrastructure Management, who use URGED for:

a) Baseline assessment of land surface movement hazard;

b) Collating urban infrastructure exposure data;

c) Tools to forecast damage associated with land surface change.

3. Town /City Authorities, who use URGED for:

a) Identification of flood hazard;

b) Assessment of exposure to flood hazard;

c) Relative estimation of urban flood vulnerability;

d) Updated flood risk associated with urban, rural land cover scenarios.

The URGED platform is a global service. For the Demo project, the pilot implementations are being executed in the UK due to the location of the end users however the Data Products have global commercial potential

Service/ system concept

The URGED platform will be built on top of existing system and service architecture but with new and crucial additional development to support the URGED services:

  1. Geospatial Data Product Methodology (Product Management) created to address the urban resilience challenges associated with subsidence and flood risk.
    1. Flood Hazard, Exposure, Vulnerability
    2. Land surface movement hazard, exposure and vulnerability
  2. Data Processing and Data Management to build and aggregate maps of the area of interest, derived from multiple sources including original mappings in addition to Earth Observation data and ground data. 
  3. Predictive Analytics Toolkit and Analytic Services based on Earth Observation data, automated image processing techniques and diverse geospatial analyses employed to create analytical data for urban landscapes.
    1. Primary data products
    2. Secondary data products
  4. Data Marts Output Interface to resilience.io to enable open-access to URGED data products for both commercial and non-commercial applications and will stimulate the market for higher value restricted-access URGED products.
  5. URGED Portal is a security-enabled web application which acts as a user friendly client to access data products and is the primary method of data delivery and enables users to search, view, interrogate and download geospatial datasets.

Space Added Value

The URGED system will make use of the following three components, of which there are no potential alternatives:

  1. Earth Observation (EO) data, to cost-effectively support scalable assessments of subsidence and flood risk using a mixture of sensor types including Optical, Synthetic Aperture Radar (SAR), Thermal Infra-Red and LIDAR.  EO images will be sourced from a variety of satellite providers, according to the attributes required;
  2. Global Navigation Satellite System (GNSS) devices for accurate geo-referencing of the ground data used for calibration of the EO-based signatures; and
  3. Satellite Communication (Satcom), to collect and send ground data from locations where mobile network coverage cannot be relied upon (e.g. cities in areas will ongoing terrestrial communications infrastructure development), for time-efficient centralised calibration of the EO-based signatures.

Current Status

The URGED Demonstration Project kicked off in May 2016 and has confirmed the Requirements Definition (RD) and Service and System Architecture (SSA) and has started planning of the pilot implementations with the named end users: Welsh Water, Wessex Water, AMEC Foster Wheeler and The Ecological Sequestration Trust (TEST). The Baseline Design Review is planned for the end of July 2016.

Prime Contractor

Project Managers

Contractor Project Manager

Andrew Carrel
Rezatec Ltd. Electron Building Fermi Avenue
Harwell Didcot
United Kingdom
OX11 0QR
United Kingdom

ESA Project Manager

Roberto Cossu
Atlas Building Harwell Science & Innovation Campus
OX11 0QX
United Kingdom

Status Date

Updated: 05 August 2016 - Created: 05 August 2016