India’s first avalanche-monitoring radar installed in North Sikkim

The Indian Army and Defence Geoinformatics and Research Establishment (DGRE) jointly installed India’s first avalanche monitoring radar in North Sikkim.

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India’s first avalanche-monitoring radar installed in North Sikkim
The radar was inaugurated by Lieutenant General Tarn Kumar Aich. (Image: India Today)

HIGHLIGHTS

  • India’s first avalanche monitoring radar was installed in North Sikkim
  • This radar has the capability to detect avalanches within three seconds of its trigger
  • This radar can also be employed to detect landslides

The Indian Army and Defence Geoinformatics and Research Establishment (DGRE) jointly installed India’s first avalanche monitoring radar in North Sikkim.

The radar was inaugurated by Lieutenant General Tarn Kumar Aich, Ati Vishisht Seva Medal, General Officer Commanding TriShakti Corps on September 20, 2022, at one of the Forward Posts of the Indian Army deployed at an altitude of 15,000 feet in Sikkim.

This radar, a first of its kind in India, has the capability to detect avalanches within three seconds of its trigger and will assist in saving troops’ lives and reducing damage to property in super high altitude areas. The avalanche radar was made operational by DGRE of DRDO, an organisation that is involved in forecasting and mitigating avalanche hazards faced by the Indian Army in the Himalayan Region.

The radar uses a series of short micro wave pulses that are scattered across the target and can detect an avalanche in under three seconds. The radar can permanently scan the targeted slope for avalanche release and track the path of the avalanche and its size in case it is triggered.

It can see through snow, fog as well as at night, making it an all-weather solution and covers an area of 2 sq/km, obviating the requirement to place additional instruments in dangerous avalanche-prone areas. The radar is also linked to an alarm system enabling automatic control and warning measures in case an avalanche is triggered. Images and videos of the event are automatically recorded for future analysis by the experts. Besides being used for the detection of avalanches, this radar can also be employed to detect landslides.

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