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ISRO to develop full-fledged Hyperspectral Imaging Earth observation satellite

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The Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) is planning to launch a full-fledged niche Earth observation (EO) satellite called the Hyperspectral Imaging Satellite or HySIS using a critical chip called optical imaging detector array it has developed.

About Hyperspectral imaging:

Hyperspectral or hyspex imaging is considered to be an EO trend that is being experimented globall An EO expert called it equivalent to ‘CATSCAN’ of Earth from space.

  • Hyspex adds a new dimension to simple optical imagers, which can be used for a range of activities including monitoring the environment, crops, looking for oil and minerals and even for military surveillance. All these activities need images that show a high level of differentiation of the object or scene.
  • ‘Hyspex’ imaging is said to enable distinct identification of objects, materials or processes on Earth by reading the spectrum for each pixel of a scene from space.
  • ISRO first tried it out in an 83-kg IMS-1 experimental satellite in May 2008. The ISRO to develop full-fledged Hyperspectral Imaging Earth observation satellitesame year, a hyperspectral camera was put on Chandrayaan-1 and used to map lunar mineral resources.
  • A German environmental satellite called EnMAP capable of hyperspectral imaging is due to be launched on an Indian booster in 2018.
  • The optical imaging detector array chip has been made at ISRO’s electronics arm, the Semi-Conductor Laboratory, Chandigarh and its architecture has been designed by Space Applications Centre, Ahmedabad.
  • ISRO is thus endeavouring to enter the domain of operational hyperspectral imaging from earth orbit with a satellite that can see in 55 spectral or colour bands from 630 km above ground.

Quick Facts about ISRO:

ISRO is the space agency of Government of India, formed with a vision to harness space technology for national development

  • Formation Year: 1969
  • Founded by: Vikram Sarabhai
  • Headquarters: Bengaluru
  • Current Chairman: A S Kiran Kumar