TOKYO, 2022, April 12 – Synspective Inc., a SAR satellite data and solutions provider, announced that it has entered into a contract for a “demonstration project for expanding the use of small SAR satellite constellations” led by the National Space Policy Secretariat of the Cabinet Office.
In recent years, in the field of remote sensing satellites, there has become an increasing need for small satellite constellations that enable high-frequency imaging. Particularly, SAR satellites (radar satellites), which are capable of making observations at night and in any weather conditions, are expected to be used in various fields such as disaster management, marine monitoring, security, and national land management. They have been considered desirable for government agencies to continue using them. However, at present, the number of satellites is still small and it is necessary to build a large number of constellations to meet the demand for timely imaging. In addition, the effectiveness, feasibility, and issues of the small SAR satellite constellation have to be to be properly evaluated.
■ Purpose of this project
In order to expand the full-scale use of SAR data in domestic ministries and agencies, the National Space Policy Secretariat of the Cabinet Office will lead a project to test small SAR satellite constellations in various administrative fields, and organize and evaluate their effectiveness, feasibility, and issues at an early stage. Furthermore, the project will conduct usage verification in the administrative field for potential usage needs, verify and evaluate effectiveness and feasibility, and sort out any issues that need improvement. Based on the results, we will identify the best approaches for full-scale use in each ministry of the Japanese government to promote future use expansion.
*Please be informed that the above-mentioned “Background” and “Purpose of this project” are quoted from the specification and translated into English.
■ Synspective’s role in this project
Synspective will set the demonstration theme, carry out the use demonstration with its small SAR satellite constellation, summarize the results, and report them to the authorities.
The demonstration theme is eight fields in total including disaster response, infrastructure management, and energy. For the demonstration, we will utilize our small SAR satellite, StriX-α (currently in operation), StriX-β (successfully put into orbit in March this year), and StriX-1 (scheduled to be launched within the year). We are planning to capture land displacement caused by the river flooding due to heavy rain, earthquakes and landslides. We will also demonstrate evaluation and monitoring methods for various infrastructure, and demonstrate technical methods that contribute to the promotion of offshore wind energy over a wide-area and highly accurate wind measurement. After conducting use demonstrations in each ministry, we will evaluate their effects on improving operational efficiency and quality, and formulate a concrete plan for actual use.
■ Comments from Dr. Motoyuki Arai, Synspective Founder and CEO:
Synspective sees this project as a new government-led challenge in Japan, which is in need of sustainable economic development to withstand various disasters. By launching and operating two satellites since its establishment in 2018, Synspective has finally entered the stage of promoting customers’ value creation in their decision-making and business opportunities. Synspective is a leading company for the realization of a sustainable society using satellite data, and we are strongly committed to expanding our contributions from this project to the private sector and to the world.
■ About Synspective
Synspective provides one-stop solutions using satellite observation data to steadily move the world forward. Applying the results of the ImPACT program (led by the Government of Japan, Cabinet Office), Synspective is building a constellation of 30 high-frequency, high-resolution SAR satellites to provide data and solutions to government and commercial outfits.