Indian Army and Defence Geoinformatics and Research Establishment (DGRE) jointly installed the Avalanche Monitoring Radar in North Sikkim on September 22.
This radar, a first of its kind in India can detect avalanches within three seconds of their trigger and will assist in saving the valuable life of troops and civilians as also vehicles in Super High-Altitude Areas.
The radar was inaugurated by Lieutenant General Tarn Kumar Aich, General Officer Commanding (GOC) of Trishakti Corps at one of the Forward Posts of the Indian Army deployed at an altitude of 15,000 feet in North Sikkim.
The avalanche radar was made operational by DGRE of DRDO, an organisation
which is involved in forecasting and mitigating of avalanche hazards faced by the Indian Army in the Himalayan Region.
It was informed that the radar uses a series of short microwave pulses which are scattered at the target and can detect an avalanche in within 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. The radar can see through snow, fog as well as in 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.
In an area where the frequency of triggering of avalanches is high, the installation of the first Avalanche Radar will go a long way in safeguarding the life of troops of the Indian Army deployed in harsh terrain and sub-zero temperatures while at the same time limiting damage to vehicles and equipment operating at such snowbound High Altitudes Areas.