A new consortium of international companies, called IRSA Development Group (IDG), has been announced. IDG consists of international companies with expertise in selected technology domains to create an advanced remote sensing network.
Integrated Remote Sensing for the Arctic (IRSA) is a scalable, civilian, all-domain system-of-systems remote sensing solution designed to provide more persistent monitoring of the Arctic. The network comprises satellites, high altitude long endurance (HALE) drones, medium altitude long endurance (MALE) drones, small unmanned aerial systems (sUAS), sea-surface and sub-sea platforms, and ground stations.
IDG’s objective is to develop and commercialize the IRSA solution as a service for safety and security in the Arctic. The partner organizations are: C-CORE (Canada), MyDefence System Integration (Kingdom of Denmark), Andøya Space Center (Norway), VTT (Finland), Scott Polar Research Institute (United Kingdom), Karl Osen (Switzerland), ViaSat Antenna Systems (Switzerland), and Boeing Phantom Works (United States).
Technology development for each segment, and their integration, is underway, and initial IRSA services are expected to be available to clients in early 2020.
Recognizing the need for more persistent remote sensing, robust communication and data connectivity in the Arctic, Boeing Defense, Space, and Security (BDS) began an intensive study in 2015, mapping the challenges and identifying gaps in designing and creating a solution to address them. Since then, Boeing has invested in establishing an international consortium to develop the technologies, products and services that can provide that solution through the IRSA program.