The all-British radar satellite, the first of its kind, is all set to orbit on a rocket, which was built in India. This is called NovaSAR, which is equipped with cameras to take pictures of the surface of the Earth in various climatic conditions at different times of a day.
Though the spacecraft is equipped with numerous tools to accomplish diversified activities, the designers are looking forward to monitoring the suspicious shipping activities. It has a dynamic receiver that will observe the radio signals of the AIS or Automatic Identification System. These signals are released by the large ships as per the international law as a part of the positional transmissions.
NovaSAR met the rocket with the help of an optical satellite. This is of high resolution and has the capacity to see in the ordinary light. This is also known as S1-4 and can distinctly observe even the tiny objects measuring 87 cm on the ground. Both the spacecraft and NovaSAR were produced by the Surrey Satellite Technology Ltd., Guildford.
The UK engineers are expert in the genre of space radar but the technologies proposed by them were used for the broader missions like European Space Agency. This is the first of its kind and resembles the shape of a cheese grater.
The radar was developed with the help of the miniature and cheap components by Airbus in Portsmouth for SSTL. The mission targets to prove that the radar imaging can be accomplished in a cost-effective manner.
This will operate in various areas that include flood, disaster response, detection of oil spills, forestry monitoring, and crop assessment. However, the scientists are keen to observe the operation of suspicious ships.
The British radar satellite will be picking the radio signals of the big ships. In case the ships don’t emit such radiations, the NovaSAR will take pictures and report to the authorities for the further corrective action.