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GAF–AG: Implementing Practical Solutions through Applied Satellite Remote Sensing and Geoinformation Management

GAF AG, headquartered in Munich, Germany is an internationally active
consulting company in the fields of information systems, remote
sensing, geo-information and thematic mapping since more than 18 years
and has affiliate companies in Germany, Ukraine, and the U.S.A. GAF has
a large number of successful project references in Europe, Africa,
Asia, South America and CIS Countries. GAF have developed extensive
experience in projects related to cadastre, land registration, title
management, forestry, agriculture, natural resources, infrastructure
management, geology, environment, and other themes using state-of-the
art spatial information technology. Our services range from needs
assessment over system design and implementation, and include also
institutional strengthening and capacity building in the mentioned
sectors, training, data compilation and interpretation as well as field
work and mapping. More details on GAF can be found in the internet

GAF is a private sector
enterprise founded in Munich in 1985 merely for delivering services
around satellite remote sensing and image processing. Its steady growth
(see figure 1) and evolution over the years has been built upon a
reputation of excellence; delivering client specific-services focused
on Earth Observation (EO) data and Geo-Information (GI). Over two
decades, GAF has developed and extended its presence and impact into
new markets and application areas across a diversity of sectors by
executing a range of projects and initiatives, which can be broadly
categorised under “sustainable development.” The depth of GAF’s
technical expertise and project experience is reflected in the
geographic scope of its activities covering over 80 countries across
five continents.

From inception, GAF has maintained a progressive and pragmatic approach
to its activities and growth. It has proactively adopted advancing
GI-technologies and satellite data resources and exploited the new
opportunities, they offer in terms of products and services.
Furthermore, by analysing market trends and user requirements, GAF has
been responsive to the dynamic demands of a diverse and international
client base.

Over the last two decades, the Earth observation / remote sensing
sector has witnessed profound changes and GAF is still spearheading
these innovations. For example, while remote sensing was once
considered a highly specialised or niche application, the related
technologies and available data resources have increased exponentially
in choice, utility and user-accessibility. The cost of implementation
has similarly been reduced and to a tangible extent, the tools have
become widely distributed amongst a growing user community entering
what could be described as the “Information-Communication technologies
mainstream.” Indeed, GIS and Remote Sensing, once highly distinct
applications have now converged into the generic domain of “spatial
information management.” Furthermore, the latter capacity is now
considered essential and central (rather than optional) to a vast range
of applications including urban management, thematic digital mapping,
environmental monitoring and emerging priorities such as security

While technical advances in hardware, software, satellite data quality
and resolution etc. certainly enable the implementation process they
are not guarantors of success and client satisfaction. This requires a
systematic and customised implementation approach, sensitive to user
requirements and the uniquely challenging conditions under which
clients must operate.

Invariably, project success depends upon the quality, expertise and
professionalism of GAF’s technical and management staff at home (in
Munich) and in the field. GAF has expanded its expertise through an
steadily growing number of employees whereas experience was kept
through an extremely low fluctuation of its key personnel. With
more than 50 highly qualified permanent staff coming from
multi-disciplinary backgrounds, project teams are tailored to project
requirements and dispatched worldwide. They deliver services in project
design and planning, overall management, technical consulting and
capacity building to private, multi-national, non-governmental and
public (governmental) clients including numerous State and Federal
Ministries, the European Union (Tacis, Phare, EuropeAID), ESA, KfW, The
World Bank, IDB, ADB and UN organisations such as the FAO as well as
other bi-lateral donors and funding agencies.

While GAF focus areas include the application of satellite remote
sensing and geographical information systems to agriculture, forestry,
environment, natural resources management and geology, cadastre, land
management and infrastructure, these key areas are not mutually
exclusive. GAF rarely addresses a sectoral problem – for example
regional forest monitoring – in isolation, but seeks synergies such as
institutional strengthening and governance improvements, as well as
highlighting the policy implications of outputs to clients. In this
way, the full benefits of the technical assistance and GAF’s
intervention is maximised.

GAF, as a member of TELESPAZIO, a Finmeccanica Group company, is in a
unique position to draw on synergies not available before and to become
an even more important player as service provider in a European and
global context.

In close cooperation with DLR (The German Space Agency), GAF’s daughter
company Euromap receives processes and distributes image data from
Indian Remote Sensing (IRS) satellites on an exclusive basis for
Europe. This offers unparalleled access to a unique archive with
contemporary and cost effective image-data suitable for many
applications. With the most recent introduction of high resolution
imagery from the latest IRS P6 sensor, GAF has once again, injected
real innovation into the EO marketplace.

Optimising the utility and (user) value of a wide range of satellite
data has always been a priority for GAF. Through its « geodata
store » GAF distributes satellite imagery and value-added data
sets such as Digital Terrain Models (DTM), land cover and land use
information to clients worldwide. Its market performance has been
acknowledged with industry awards recognising the company as one of the
leading European distributors of satellite data. In addition, an
enviable track record of client satisfaction and successfully completed
projects has confirmed GAF as an innovator and leader in the dynamic EO
sector. Furthermore, GAF’s commitment to maintaining its role in a
rapidly changing and competitive sector ensures the adoption of state
of the art methods and technologies in digital image processing,
cartography and applications development. Borne out of the need to
streamline and optimize in house information management and analysis
processes, GAF has started several years ago with the development of
application dedicated software tools in support of some of its core
domains such as agriculture and geology. These activities have grown
into a viable market and have broadened the portfolio of GAF products
and services.

Today, the technical competence and vast experience of GAF is embodied
in over 600 successfully completed projects worldwide. GAF considers
all of its clients, from the earliest to the most recent, and the
growing user community they represent as a most precious asset. This
valuable human capital (empowered with technical skills and EO
resources) continues to make positive contributions in social,
environmental and economic spheres and consequently, they create and
strengthen development opportunities worldwide.

GAF AG is currently managed by the founder of the company, Dr. Rupert Haydn (CEO) and Dr. Peter Volk (COO).

D-80634 Munich
Phone: 089 12 1528-0
Fax: 089 12 15 28-79