NuSAR is a small, dual frequency, high bandwidth synthetic aperture radar system that provides large area surveillance and reconnaissance for small manned and unmanned aircraft. Independent of weather and lighting conditions, NuSAR can detect manmade or metal objects with particular clarity, even through foliage and under topsoil.

NuSAR consists of an L- and X-band SAR capable of large area survey and embedded real-time image formation. It features onboard GPS/INS, processing, raw data storage, and data link management. Other features include:

  • Wide azimuth beam to image a target from multiple angles.
  • Multi-aperture processing (producing multiple, independent, sub-aperture images of an area corresponding to different observation angles).
  • Ability to cue other high resolution electro-optical (EO) sensors such as SDL’s EyePod.
  • Standard Ethernet interfaces.
  • Small SWAP (size, weight and power)
  • Geo-registered, NITFS-compliant image products.

Sample NuSAR X-Band Image

NuSAR was originally developed for the DUSTER program through a joint effort with the Naval Research Laboratory (NRL) and Brigham Young University (BYU). It was later used more extensively under the FEATHER program.

NuSAR is available as one component of SDL’s Intelligent Geo-Aware Sensor System (IGSS).