Rome 25 November 2016 20:00
An important agreement on Space cooperation was signed today in Milan during the XXVIII General Assembly meeting of the Italy-Japan Business Group (IJBG). The meeting was chaired by Mauro Moretti, President of the IJBG and CEO of Leonardo, and Masami Iijima, who is co-President of the IJBG. The agreement will see the Italian Space Agency (ASI) and the Japanese Space Agency (JAXA) cooperate in the field of disaster management using data from the Italian COSMO-SkyMed satellite constellation and the Japanese ALOS-2 satellite.
Under the terms of the agreement, data from COSMO-SkyMed will be pooled with radar data from the ALOS-2 satellite in order to better respond to emergency situations in both Italy and Japan. The agreement also provides for joint research on issues relating to risk management and the creation of a data archive for the countries.
The importance of the agreement was shown recently when, during the earthquake that hit central Italy, data from ALOS-2 was combined with that from COSMO-SkyMed to support relief efforts. It was possible to use the collected data to generate seismic deformation maps, helping to evaluate damage and direct emergency response.
COSMO-SkyMed is the most ambitious Earth-observation satellite programme ever implemented by Italy. It is the first such Italian project to feature a dual-use, being designed to study the Earth’s surface and help prevent environmental disasters. Leonardo plays a leading role in the programme, both in the construction of the satellite and in command and control. The satellites were manufactured by Thales Alenia Space, a joint venture between Thales and Leonardo. On-board sensors were provided by Leonardo and the constellation’s ground segment was developed by Telespazio, another Leonardo/Thales joint venture. COSMO-SkyMed’s command and control is carried out at Telespazio’s Fucino Space Centre. E-GEOS, a joint venture between Telespazio and the Italian Space Agency, acquires and distributes the satellite data for civilian use and develops value-added products and services from its Matera Space Centre.