Quad push: ISRO taking space ties with US, Japan & Australia to a higher orbit

Bengaluru: As Quad takes a leap forward, India is deepening space ties with the US, Japan and Australia – the other three member nations of the group. Known as the "Quadrilateral Security Dialogue", the Quad grouping held its first virtual summit last week.

The four countries plan to establish a series of working groups that will focus on climate change; critical and emerging technologies, including working to set technology standards and norms and jointly developing some of the critical technologies of the future, officials said.

The Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) last week shipped the S-band Synthetic Aperture Radar (SAR) to US space agency NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory as the joint NASA-ISRO SAR (NISAR) mission moved forward.

NISAR is a joint collaboration for a dual-frequency L and S-band SAR for earth observation.

"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", according to NASA (National Aeronautics and Space Administration).

The mission is targeted for launch in 2022 from ISRO's Sriharikota spaceport in Andhra Pradesh's Nellore district, about 100 kms north of Chennai.

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.

On March 11, Bengaluru-headquartered ISRO and Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA) reviewed the ongoing cooperation in earth observation, lunar cooperation and satellite navigation.

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