Indian space startup Pixxel bags US contract for hyperspectral imagery

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Pixxel Space Technologies

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New Delhi: Bengaluru-based space startup Pixxel has bagged a five-year contract for supplying technical hyperspectral imagery to United States' National Reconnaissance Organization (NRO).

The Virginia-based NRO also awarded six study contracts for commercial hyperspectral imagery to five other companies -- BlackSky Technology, HyperSat, Orbital Sidekick, Planet, and Xplore.

"The entire team here at Pixxel is excited to begin this journey with the NRO. We are fully committed to this fantastic opportunity to offer our imaging capabilities to the organisation, its partners, and the US geospatial intelligence community," Chief Executive Officer, Pixxel Space Technologies, Awais Ahmed, told PTI.

He said Pixxel will provide technical hyperspectral imagery (HSI) remote sensing capabilities through modelling and simulation and data evaluation using its currently on-orbit pathfinder systems and future constellations.

Ahmed said Pixxel will demonstrate its capabilities through end-to-end tasking, collection, and product dissemination and respond to ad-hoc product ordering and delivery requests from the NRO and its partners.

Last year, Pixxel had launched its hyper-spectral imaging satellite 'Shakuntala' and 'Anand' on-board SPACEX's Falcon9 rocket and ISRO's PSLV respectively.

The start-up plans to launch six more hyperspectral imaging satellites this year.

Pixxel's hyperspectral satellites capture images at hundreds of wavelengths in the electromagnetic spectrum and reveal key data about the health of the planet.

The constellation will aim to provide global coverage every 24 hours and help detect, monitor and predict global phenomena across agriculture, mining, environment and energy use cases.