Context:

NASA and ISRO are collaborating on developing an SUV-sized satellite called NISAR, which will detect movements of the planet’s surface as small as 0.4 inches over areas about 100 sq. meters.

The satellite will be launched in 2022 from the Satish Dhawan Space Center in Sriharikota (Andhra Pradesh) into a near-polar orbit.

Relevance:

Prelims, GS-III: Science and Technology (Space technology, Advancements in Technology and their applications)

Dimensions of the Article:

  1. About NISAR
  2. Functions and Benefits of NISAR

About NISAR

  • The Name ‘NISAR’ is short for NASA-ISRO-SAR in which SAR stands for Synthetic Aperture Radar.
  • NISAR will be the first satellite mission to use two different radar frequencies (L-band and S-band) to measure changes in our planet’s surface less than a centimetre across.
  • The mission is targeted to launch in early 2022 from ISRO’s Sriharikota spaceport.
  • NASA is providing the mission’s L-band SAR, a high-rate communication subsystem for science data, GPS receivers, a solid-state recorder and payload data subsystem.
  • ISRO is providing the spacecraft bus, the S-band radar, the launch vehicle and associated launch services for the mission, whose goal is to make global measurements of the causes and consequences of land surface changes using advanced radar imaging.

Functions and Benefits of NISAR

  • NISAR would provide a means of disentangling highly spatial and temporally complex processes ranging from ecosystem disturbances to ice sheet collapses and natural hazards including earthquakes, tsunamis, volcanoes and landslides.
  • NASA added that the mission will measure Earth’s changing ecosystems, dynamic surfaces and ice masses, providing information about biomass, natural hazards, sea level rise and groundwater, and will support a host of other applications.
  • NISAR will observe Earth’s land and ice-covered surfaces globally with 12-day regularity on ascending and descending passes, sampling Earth on average every six days for a baseline three-year mission, allowing the mission to observe a wide range of Earth processes, from the flow rates of glaciers and ice sheets to the dynamics of earthquakes and volcanoes.

-Source: The Hindu

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