The US Air Force C-17 aircraft landed in Bengaluru on Wednesday and handed over NASA-ISRO Synthetic Aperture Radar (NISAR) NISAR to the Indian space agency which marks a milestone in the US-India ties in space collaboration.
“Touchdown in Bengaluru! @ISRO receives NISAR (@NASA-ISRO Synthetic Aperture Radar) on a @USAirforce C-17 from@NASAJPL in California, setting the stage for final integration of the Earth observation satellite, a true symbol of #USIndia civil space collaboration,” tweeted US Consulate General Chennai.
NISAR, an Earth-observation satellite, is being jointly developed by the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) and the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO).
NISAR was envisioned by NASA and ISRO eight years ago in 2014 as a powerful demonstration of the capability of radar as a science tool and help us study Earth’s dynamic land and ice surfaces in greater detail than ever before.
It is expected to be launched in January 2024 from Satish Dhawan Space Centre into a near-polar orbit.The satellite will operate for a minimum of three years. It is a Low Earth Orbit (LEO) observatory. NISAR will map the entire globe in 12 days.
NISAR will be the first radar of its kind in space to systematically map Earth, using two different radar frequencies (L-band and S-band) to measure changes in our planet’s surface less than a centimeter across.
NISAR will provide a wealth of data and information about the Earth’s surface changes, natural hazards, and ecosystem disturbances, helping to advance our understanding of Earth system processes and climate change.
The mission will provide critical information to help manage natural disasters such as earthquakes, tsunamis, and volcanic eruptions, enabling faster response times and better risk assessments.
NISAR data will be used to improve agriculture management and food security by providing information about crop growth, soil moisture, and land-use changes.
The mission will provide data for infrastructure monitoring and management, such as monitoring of oil spills, urbanization, and deforestation.
NISAR will help to monitor and understand the impacts of climate change on the Earth’s land surface, including melting glaciers, sea-level rise, and changes in carbon storage.