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 Climate Change

Innovation
Published on: April 22, 2020, 9:46 p.m.
India, France and Airbus to monitor climate change with satellite TRISHNA
  • An artist's view of the Trishna satellite. Source: Airbus

By Business India Editorial

The French Space Agency (Centre National d’Etudes Spatiales, CNES) is partnering with ISRO (Indian Space Research Organisation) to develop an infrared observation system with high thermal resolution and revisit capability. It has also signed a contract with Airbus Defence and Space for the development and manufacture of a thermal infrared instrument for the TRISHNA satellite.

Said Jean-Marc Nasr, Head of Space Systems at Airbus: "This will enable breakthrough applications in agriculture, urban and coastal zone management, meteorology, climate science, and [have] many [other] commercial applications.”

In the international partnership, ISRO will provide the platform, the visible and short wave infrared instrument, and will be the prime contractor for the satellite, while CNES is co-responsible for the mission and will provide the thermal infrared instrument, to be developed by Airbus. The ground segment is shared between both countries. The launch will take place post 2021.

TRISHNA (Thermal infraRed Imaging Satellite for High-resolution Natural resource Assessment) will thus be the latest satellite dedicated to climate monitoring and operational applications.

It represents a significant step forward, both in terms of resolution and refresh rate, compared with existing missions, improving research opportunities, and enabling further development of applications.

While existing missions are limited in terms of resolution (above 1km) and with revisit only every few weeks, TRISHNA will image the Earth every three days, at 50m resolution, observing a wide temperature range, from approximately -20°C to +30°C, with high precision (0.3°C).

TRISHNA observations are expected to enhance the understanding of water cycle management and the impact of climate change, especially at a local level.

Measuring surface temperatures provides information on a lack of water and its impact on the vegetative cycle, and this monitoring of water and energy cycles is one of the main objectives of the mission.

This mission will also serve numerous other applications: surveillance of continental and coastal waters, follow up of urban heat traps, risk monitoring (fire detection and volcanic activity), the study of the cryosphere (glaciers, frozen lakes) and radiation budget assessment.

India and France had signed a joint vision statement for space co-operation in 2018. Other ISRO joint initiatives include a mission called NISAR (NASA ISRO Synthetic Aperture Radar) for earth science studies. ISRO and JAXA scientists are also conducting a joint satellite mission feasibility study to explore the moon’s polar region.


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