Product & Technologies

Major Technologies

SASE is using various technologies to develop products for combating avalanche and other cryospheric hazards in snow bound regions. Major technologies are listed as

  • Remote Sensing and GIS Technology

    Optical and Microwave satellite imageries are used to retrieve information about snow cover from inaccessible snow bound regions. Avalanche prone areas are identified using Remote Sensing & GIS techniques and developed avalanche hazard data cards (a pocket size folded hardcopy containing the terrain, climatology, detail avalanche information etc). GIS-based Digital Avalanche Atlas containing the information about avalanche prone terrain e.g. area, slope, aspect, ground cover, location of avalanche sites, track profile, cross-sectional/longitudinal profile and many other information related to avalanches has been developed for some areas and under development for some more areas. 3-D multi-perspective Fly-through models of the areas of interest have been generated using digital elevation model (DEM) and high resolution satellite imageries.

  • FIG : Development of Algorithms for Operational Snowcover Maps using MODIS

    FIG : Homepage of Digital Avalanche Atlas for Srinagar-Leh Axis

    Homepage of Digital Avalanche Atlas for Srinagar-Leh Axis

    FIG : 3-D visualisation of avalanche prone terrain

    3-D visualisation of avalanche prone terrain

    FIG : Snapshot of Avalanche Hazard Data Card

    Snapshot of Avalanche Hazard Data Card

    FIG : Decision Support System for Avalanche Hazard using Remote Sensing and GIS
    Decision Support System for Avalanche Hazard using Remote Sensing and GIS

  • GPS Technology

    SASE has developed GPS-based real time avalanche path warning and navigation system. The system is capable of providing navigation help for the person moving in avalanche prone areas. GPS based application was developed and integrated with hand held GPS for navigation.

  • FIG : GPS Technology

  • Technology for control of Avalanches in Formation, Middle and Run Out Zone

    SASE has designed and developed various types of control structure for controllong avalanches in formation, middle and run-out zone. Control structures e.g. Snow bridges, Snow nets, Wind baffles, Snow fence, Jet roof, terrain modification, terrace cutting, etc are designed for prevention of avalanches in formation zone. These structures have been installed in the formation zone of D-10 near Jawahar tunnel (J&K) along NH-1A. Snow gallery and avalanche diverting structures are designed for the control of avalanches in middle zone.

  • FIG : Snow nets and snow bridges installed at D-10 site

    Snow nets and snow bridges installed at D-10 site

    FIG : Jet roof installed at D-10 site

    Jet roof installed at D-10 site

    FIG : Design of snow gallery

    Design of snow gallery

  • Technology for Simulation and Modelling

    SASE is using latest hardware and software technologies for simulation and modelling. Avalanche Forecasting Models, Weather Forecasting Models, Snow Cover Simulation Model, Avalanche Dynamics Model, Snow Characterization Model etc. are developed using these technologies.

  • FIG : Hidden Markov Model for Weather and Avalanche Forecasting

    Hidden Markov Model for Weather and Avalanche Forecasting

    FIG : Snow cover simulation model for simulation of snow cover characteristics
    Snow cover simulation model for simulation of snow cover characteristics

    FIG : Avalanche flow simulation model

    Avalanche flow simulation model

  • Infrasonic Technology for Avalanche Feedback Mechanism

    Acoustic emissions (AE) are feeble acoustic signatures produced by materials during the microscopic deformation/failure processes which finally may result into catastrophic failure of the snowpack in the form of avalanches. SASE has done extensive work in this direction since last few years through various lab and field based experiments on AE behaviour of snow. Snow-sensor coupling, short range nature of AE signals, selection of sensor sensitivities, operating frequency range and interference of noise components were tackled by using a multi-sensor coupling through acoustic arrestors and waveguides.

  • FIG : Lab experiments on multi sensor acoustic emission coupling
    Lab experiments on multi sensor acoustic emission coupling

    FIG : Acoustic emission monitoring on an avalanche slope

    Acoustic emission monitoring on an avalanche slope

  • Technology to Extract Geothermal Heat

    SASE has successfully demonstrated the technology of extracting geothermal heat for space heating at its campus in Manali (H.P). The technology is being used first time in India. The current heating capacity of the system is over 100 kW with coefficient of performance about 3.3 (energy saving up to 69%). The output temperatures achieved for heating is about 550C for input temperature 180C (and for cooling up to 100C for input temperature 550C). The total loop length and boring depths of the system are 5500 m and 2500 m, respectively. The system is having a closed U-loop ground loop heat exchanger (GLHE) design.

  • FIG : Geothermal space heating system

    Geothermal space heating system

  • Unmanned Air Vehicle (UAV) Technology

    Unmanned aerial vehicles are being used for snow cover information extraction from inaccessible and remote snow bound areas.

  • FIG : UAV at high altitude

    UAV at high altitude

  • Technologies for Data Observations

    SASE is using state-of-the-art technologies for data observations in cryospheric regions. SASE has installed automatic weather stations in various Himalayan ranges (e.g. Pir Panjal, Great Himalaya, Ladakh, Karakoram etc.) and Antarctica for continuous data recording. Ground Penetrating Radar has been used in ground as well as air borne mode for assessment of snow cover and glacier thicknesses. Various instruments have been developed for data observations in cryospheric regions.

    FIG : Automatic Weather Station in Himalaya

    Automatic Weather Station in Himalaya

    • The Parallel Probe Snow Profiler (PPSP) is an indigenously developed, state-of-the-art, multi-parameter probing device developed by SASE, DRDO to record the vertical distributions of moisture content, temperature, penetration hardness corresponding to precise depth positions and geographic locations of a large snow or soil cover. This instrument is remotely operated device using a handheld RCD and can profile up to depth of 2 m with precise depth resolution of 5 mm.

    • FIG : Parallel Probe Snow Profiler

      Parallel Probe Snow Profiler

    • Ground Penetrating Radar has been used in cryospheric regions of Himalaya and Antarctica for various snow and glacier related studies.

    • FIG : GPR study in Antarctica

      GPR study in Antarctica

    • Remotely Operated Vehicle (ROV) for data observations in risk prone areas

    • SASE Products

    • Computerized reconstructions of the 3-D snow microstructure using X-ray Micro-Tomography

    • State-of-the-art upper air observations

    • SASE Products

Major Products

SASE is providing services to the users in snow bound areas by avalanche forecasting, weather forecasting, designing of avalanche control structures, avalanche diverging structures, snow gallery, instrumentation for data collection in cold regions, guidance for safe camp siting, preparing avalanche atlases, avalanche hazard data cards and training materials for combating Avalanche Hazards. The major products of SASE are listed as

  • Avalanche Forecasting Models

    • eN10 is a web-enabled Avalanche Forecast System. The system is based upon popular k-nearest neighbour method with many enhanced features. The major enhancement has been brought about by applying Principle Component Analysis for removing data redundancy and Neural Networks for decision making. In general, 10 neighbours from the past data are picked up and analysed for decision making.
    • Expert System (XAF) based avalanche forecast model. Model is based upon expert's generated rules for Avalanche prediction.

    • SASE Products

      Expert system based avalanche prediction model

    • Snow cover simulation model (SCSM) simulates the properties of snow pack which are useful in avalanche forecasting. SCSM is an important tool to describe the evolution of the internal state of the snowpack. It is a 1-D model which solves the mass and energy balance equations using a Finite Difference numerical scheme. The model has been developed in Visual Basic programming language on a windows based platform.

    • Hidden Markov Model (HMM) for avalanche forecasting is based on properties of Markov Chain. There are different states and observations in the model derived from snow-meteorological parameters. The model predicts avalanches in four days advance.

  • Weather Forecasting Models

    • Customize WRF model for weather forecasting. SASE has customized WRF (Weather Research Forecast) model for prediction of forecast in 3 km x 3 km grid of snow bound regions of Western and Central Himalaya, India as per requirements of the users.
    • Analogue weather forecast (AWF) system for North-West Himalaya is statistical based weather forecast model.

    • Four days advance weather forecast using customize WRF model

  • Designing of Avalanche Control Structures

    • SASE is designing various types of formation, middle and run-out zone avalanche control structures based on properties of avalanche sites. Snow bridges, snow rakes, snow nets, jet roofs, snow fences etc. are designed and installed at Banihal top to protect National Highway from snow avalanches. Snow Gallery is designed to protect highway in the middle zone of avalanche.

    • Control structures in formation zone of avalanche

  • Design and development of instruments for data collection in cold regions

    • Parallel Probe Saturation Profiler (PPSP) is a fast measuring wirelessly operated probing device for vertical distribution of liquid water content (LWC) and liquid water saturation (LWS) level in porous materials like snow and soil.
    • SASE Products

      Parallel Probe Saturation Profiler

    • Instrumented Avalanche Rod (IAR) is a portable multi utility tool for easy and safe movement in cryospheric region. It helps pedestrian to measure various snowpack parameters expediently to get first hand basic information of the snow pack stability and crevasse in glacier. It has two variants: (1) field module and (2) scientific module. The first variant of IAR is equipped with shovel, ice axe, GPS, avalanche victim detector (AVD) and torch. Scientific version of IAR is made with additional electronic sensors like load cell, thermocouples and magnetic ring to know snowpack stability index by measuring the temperature and hardness index of various layers.

    • SASE Products

      Instrumented Avalanche Rod

    • Radio based Remote Telemetry System (RRTS) has been developed for collection of data on interactive mode from study areas in inaccessible snow bound avalanche prone areas. The system has the flexibility of configuration of the remote station from the central station.
    • Passive Microwave Radiometers of different frequencies have the potential of inferring snow properties without physical touch. Brightness temperature measurements are recorded to know the snow parameters such as water equivalent, snow grain size, snow density, and snow temperature.

    • SASE Products

      Passive Microwave Radiometer

    • Multi Parameter Probe provides the hardness and temperature profiles with respect to snow depth which gives insight in to the snowpack conditions.

    • SASE Products

      Multi Parameter Probe

  • Remote Sensing Data Based Products

    • Avalanche Hazard Data Cards of avalanche prone areas in Jammu and Kashmir are prepared. Data cards provide information related to avalanche sites along various road axis in border areas using remote sensing data.

    • SASE Products

      Avalanche Hazard Data Cards

    • Digital avalanche atlases of various road axes in avalanche prone areas of Jammu and Kashmir are prepared. Atlases for some areas are under preparation. Digital avalanche atlas provides detailed information about snow avalanches in the region in digital form.
    • Fly-Through Models of various axes of snow bound regions are generated as per requirement from the users.

    • Fly-Through model using high resolution imagery

  • Product for training to the users to combat avalanche hazard

    • Avalanche user's guide prepared in Hindi and English

    • Avalanche User's Guide


    • Pre-winter, Mid-winter, Post-winter and Annual reports of snow-met data and avalanche occurrences are providing important information of snow pack evolution and avalanches along various road axes of Jammu and Kashmir.
    • Multimedia products on Avalanche Safety and Rescue, Artificial Triggering of avalanches, Avalanche accidents-lesson learnt, Avalanche information etc. are popular among users. These product display past avalanche accidents and lesson learned from those accidents in multimedia video format.
    • Summit X:An interactive video game aimed at generating awareness about avalanches.


    SASE Products

    Multi-media products on Avalanche Awareness

    SASE Products

    Multi-media product on Artificial Avalanche Triggering

    Multi-media product on Avalanche Accidents