India's Polar Satellite Launch Vehicle will launch Israel's first synthetic-aperture radar (SAR) intelligence satellite in August. The programme is funded partially by an unidentified country, which in return will get a SAR intelligence satellite for its defence needs.

The SAR payload has been manufactured by the Elta subsidiary of Israel Aerospace Industries, which built the satellite.

Israel needs a SAR satellite to complete its intelligence gathering capability, based currently on the Offeq-5 imaging satellite and two Eros Earth observation spacecraft.

The launch of Ofeq-6 failed in September 2004. A new generation of Ofeq-7 imaging satellites will be launched in 2008.

Source: Flight International