The Council for Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR) is developing a C-Band phased array synthetic aperture radar (SAR) payload with support from the Department of Science and Innovation and this is one of the technologies on show at the Africa Aerospace and Defence (AAD) exhibition at Air Force Base Waterkloof this week.
The CSIR said the SAR payload has been developed in collaboration with South African space industry players, SCS Space and Dragonfly Aerospace. The payload (named SAR-C) is designed to support constellations of micro-satellites, while providing advanced SAR performance modes, including high-resolution wide-swath digital beamforming. The design boasts significant redundancy to extend life expectancy in the harsh space environment and lower manufacture costs through local SMMEs due to the highly scalable architecture based on PCB (printed circuit board) technology, the CSIR said.
At this year’s expo, which runs from 21 to 25 September, the CSIR is highlighting several technologies, including a locally developed biometric system for children, which identifies children from infancy to adulthood by using biometrics captured at birth or during infancy, to manage children’s identities in South Africa. The CSIR has also developed a contactless fingerprint recognition device that verifies an individual’s identity by comparing a captured fingerprint to one that is on paper or stored in memory.
The organisation is also demonstrating its cybersecurity early warning software system, which helps small, medium, and large businesses detect network intrusions and avoid the disclosure of sensitive information and eventual revenue loss. Featuring alongside these technologies is Meerkat, K-Line technology for fire disaster management and The Asset and Fleet Management System, a decision support tool developed by the CSIR to provide situational awareness around business operations to enable effective and efficient management of operational assets to personnel safety.
CSIR business development manager Tendani Malumedzha said the CSIR will use AAD to not only showcase technologies, but also engage fully with the public and private sectors regarding their technological needs.
“The CSIR is very excited to be showcasing a suite of technologies at this year’s AAD trade exhibition and conference. We have a track record of using our research and development capabilities in information and cybersecurity, command control and integrated systems, optronic sensor systems, as well as radar and electronic warfare to design unique solutions to enhance state security and strengthen the competitiveness of local industry. We also have a keen interest in engaging with the public and private sectors, listening to their needs, and responding by collaboratively designing integrated security solutions that can be commercialised,” said Malumedzha.