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Tata’s military-grade satellite successfully placed into orbit by Elon Musk’s company SpaceX’s Falcon 9 rocket

Tata Sons company, successfully launched India's first military-grade geospatial satellite constructed wholly by the private sector

On April 7th, Tata Advanced Systems Ltd (TASL), a Tata Sons company, successfully launched India’s first military-grade geospatial satellite constructed wholly by the private sector, reported the Economic Times. 

TSAT-1A, a sub-metre resolution earth observation satellite, was launched in conjunction with Satellogic. However, the complete functionality of the said satellite will be achieved in a few months. 

The launch proceeded from the Kennedy Space Center in Florida, using SpaceX’s Falcon 9 rocket. The TSAT-1A, built at the Vemagal plant in Karnataka, was part of the payload on the Bandwagon-1 mission.

TSAT-1A, weighing less than 50 kg, now orbits the Earth in low-earth orbit, ready to produce high-resolution imagery with exceptional precision, less than one meter per pixel. TASL officials verified that the satellite has entered its planned orbit and will be thoroughly tested in the next weeks to ensure full performance.

Once operational, TSAT-1A is planned to primarily serve the government and armed forces, providing high-resolution military-grade imagery. According to reports, the major consumers would be the government and armed forces, but the company will also cater to commercial customers. According to ET, plans are already underway to construct a ground center in India for data download and processing.

While India possesses a few ISRO-built military spy satellites, this is the first private-sector project of its kind.

TSAT-1A is unique among Earth observation satellites because of its sub-meter resolution imaging capabilities, which provide incredibly detailed views of the Earth’s surface. This precision is especially useful for applications that require high-resolution data, such as urban planning and environmental monitoring.

Compared to other satellites, TSAT-1A’s multispectral and hyperspectral imaging technologies offer a greater range of data collection options. These features allow the satellite to acquire photos from many bands of the electromagnetic spectrum, providing greater detail than typical optical images.

TSAT-1A is also known for its high collection capacity, dynamic range, and low latency delivery. This means it can acquire more photographs in less time, with a broader range of light sensitivity, and transport them to ground users more swiftly.

Currently, India has a limited number of military espionage satellites developed by ISRO. TASL plans to construct a constellation of comparable satellites in the future, with its production facility capable of producing up to 25 low earth orbit (LEO) spacecraft each year. These satellites are being developed in collaboration with Satellogic Inc., a market leader in sub-meter resolution earth observation satellites.

Meanwhile, the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) possesses satellites capable of sharing imagery, but their applications are limited due to the enormous coverage required. India presently relies on US corporations for its imaging needs. And the necessity has grown as a result of disputes with China along the Line of Actual Control (LAC).

ISRO has also collaborated with the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) to create a Synthetic Aperture Radar satellite for Earth observation.

Ayodhra Ram Mandir special coverage by OpIndia

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OpIndia Staff
OpIndia Staffhttps://www.opindia.com
Staff reporter at OpIndia

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