GalaxEye Makes Historic Strides in SAR Technology for HAPS

Galaxy Eye
Preeti Bali / 7:27 am / May 23, 2024

GalaxEye, a Bengaluru-based space technology company, has taken a giant leap forward in the field of Synthetic Aperture Radar (SAR) technology. They recently achieved a historic milestone by successfully testing their SAR system on a high-altitude pseudo-satellite (HAPS) developed by the National Aerospace Laboratories (NAL). This accomplishment marks GalaxEye as the world’s first private entity to conduct SAR trials on a HAPS platform.

Revolutionizing Surveillance Through All-Weather Imaging

HAPS are essentially long-endurance drones that operate in the stratosphere, powered by solar energy. They offer a significant advantage over traditional electro-optical cameras by being able to capture high-quality images regardless of weather conditions, including cloud cover. GalaxEye’s innovative SAR sensor addresses this very challenge, providing valuable all-weather, day-and-night imaging capabilities.

Collaboration for Innovation and Self-Reliance

The successful trials represent a major step forward in the ongoing partnership between GalaxEye and NAL, formalized through a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU). This collaboration signifies the commitment of both organizations to propel India’s space exploration capabilities and support the “Self-Reliant India” initiative.

“We are incredibly grateful for NAL’s collaboration,” expressed Suyash Singh, Co-founder and CEO of GalaxEye. “The rigorous test flights provided us with invaluable data, which will be instrumental in our ongoing research and development efforts focused on miniaturizing SAR technology to achieve lower size, weight, and power consumption.”

India at the Forefront of SAR Innovation

Previously, SAR technology for HAPS was largely restricted to government space agencies in a limited number of countries. GalaxEye’s breakthrough achievement positions India as a leader in SAR innovation, aligning perfectly with the nation’s aspirations for technological self-sufficiency.

The potential applications of GalaxEye’s SAR technology extend beyond defense operations. This technology holds immense promise for environmental monitoring and disaster management efforts, ultimately contributing to societal well-being. In fact, GalaxEye has already collaborated with ISRO and DRDO on radar imaging projects using Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAVs) in the past year.

Looking Ahead: Optimizing SAR Technology for Practical Use

While the initial tests have been highly encouraging, further refinement is necessary before widespread deployment of these platforms for real-world applications. An NAL spokesperson emphasized, “Our primary focus now is on optimizing SAR technology to achieve minimal size, weight, and power consumption characteristics.”

The successful demonstration conducted on May 10th at the Aeronautical Test Range near Chitradurga, facilitated by DRDO, marks a significant moment in the advancement of aerospace technology. GalaxEye, incubated at IIM-Madras, is on a mission to redefine global standards in SAR innovation, fostering India’s self-reliance in this critical technology and bolstering its capabilities in both defense and environmental monitoring.

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