We study advanced remote sensing technology and develop instruments that can measure atmospheric wind, water vapor, and precipitation with high temporal and spatial resolutions. One of their applications is to build a system that can detect localized heavy rainfalls, so-called "guerrilla rainstorms", and tornados much earlier than the current operational systems. We also make research in spaceborne radars, lidars, and submillimeter spectroscopic sensors that measure global distributions of precipitation, clouds, and winds in order to improve accuracy in global climate/weather monitoring and forecasting.
We are, moreover, engaged in the development of an airborne synthetic aperture radar (SAR) which can produce images of ground surfaces and detect their small variations. Our research includes advanced analytical techniques on SAR images as well. Data obtained by SAR are utilized to collect geographical information associated with natural incidents such as volcanic eruptions and earthquakes.
There is the related "Okinawa Electromagnetic Technology Center".
Okinawa Electromagnetic Technology Center

Observational Data


Previous News

Research Activities

Spaceborne Radar Technology

The Global Precipitation Measurement (GPM) is an international cooperative mission to measure global precipitation accurately and frequently. The Dual-frequency Precipitation Radar (DPR) on the GPM core satellite has been jointly developed by NICT and JAXA.

GPM (The Global Precipitation Measurement) of image picture

The Earth Clouds, Aerosols and Radiation Explorer (Earth CARE) will observe clouds and aerosols simultaneously and thus improve estimates of global warming. NICT and JAXA are cooperatively developing the Cloud Profiling Radar (CPR) that is the world first spaceborne Doppler weather radar.

Earth CARE of image picture

Airborne Synthetic Aperture Radar Technology

The Pi-SAR2 is an airborne synthetic aperture radar (SAR) that can be used to observe the surface of the earth with a large swath width (5 km) and high spatial resolution (30 cm),even in night and/or in bad weather conditions.

SAR antenna of photo

Pi-SAR2 image of the crater of Shinmoedake.(Mar.2011) of observation photo Sendai Airport and its vicinity after the earthquake and tsunami.(Mar.2011) of observation photo

Ground-based Weather Radar Technology

In the Okinawa Electromagnetic Technology Center, advanced radar signal processing has been studied to develop new techniques besides ground validation of satellite-borne radars by using a polarimetric rain radar, COBRA, and a 443 MHz wind profiler.

COBRA (CRL Okinawa Bistatic polarimetric RAdar) of photo 400 MHz-band wind profiler of photo

A phased-array weather radar for measuring the 3-dimensional structures of rapidly-developed localized heavy rainfall systems within 10 seconds has been developed.

Development of Phased Array Weather Radar of image picture


Kobe PAWR:Latest Rainfall Distribution

Okinawa PAWR:Latest Rainfall Distribution

Lidar Technology

Lidar, that is a kind of radar but using infrared or visible light, can detect invisible small particles, that is aerosol, in atmosphere. Lidar can contribute environment monitoring, and furthermore provide wind information by Doppler measurement of reflected signal from particles.


Terahertz Sensing Technology

Terahertz wave, which has been unexplored frequency region and does not propagate a long distance, has potential for detection of very small fraction of atmospheric constituents with sensors on platform in higher altitude or space.


Outcome etc.