Norway is now working with the US to develop satellites in order to monitor the Norwegian seas. The satellites should be able to find ships that do not want to be spotted.
This autumn, a Norwegian satellite will be launched from French Guiana in South America. NORSAT-3 will provide support to the Coast Guard and for crisis management, reports NRK.
Unlike previous Norwegian surveillance satellites, the new satellite does not depend on the reception of the ships’ AIS signals to detect them.
The AIS provides information on the identity, position, and course of the ships, but can be switched off or falsified by the ships themselves. In this way, the new satellite can detect ships that are actively trying not to be seen.
“Each type of instrument contributes with slightly different images, so the more technologies we have, the more complete the image will be,” says Richard Olsen, head of research at the Norwegian Defense Research Institute (FFI).
In two years, an even more advanced satellite, Norsat-4, will be launched.
The FFI and the Norwegian Space Centre are currently collaborating on the project, among other things, with an American defense institution. The planned launch of this satellite is in about two years from now.