Biosurveillance and GIS: Application of Geospatial Information Science to Biological Defense

Journal of Map & Geography Libraries, Volume 4, Issue 2 June 2008 , pages 224 – 239

Stephen P. Linger; Michael J. Brown; Gerald E. Streit; Matthew A. Nelson; and Michael D. Williams

“Los Alamos National Laboratory has developed geospatial applications to plan and train for response to terrorist attacks involving aerosolized biological agents and for rapid post-event analysis and impact assessment. The planning applications have been used to assist with the deployment of air samplers in U.S. cities across the country as part of BioWatch and other federal programs. Post-event analytical applications are used to help identify where and how much biological agent might have been released, and who may have been exposed to the bioagent. The applications integrate atmospheric dispersion and source inversion models within a geographic information systems framework. To provide both a full-featured interactive user environment and a rich extensible development framework, the mature capabilities of commercial geospatial technologies are employed. The biodefense applications and some of their unique features, such as sensor siting, source inversion models, and the diurnal population database, are described, along with reconstructed results from the application of these capabilities to an actual environmental background event.”