A $70 million dollar projects funded by Chinese investment fund, Cybernaut will power the development and launch of 10 Dauria Aerospace satellites designed to monitor life in key cities around the world. The joint Russia-China venture will be part of the "Urban Observer" project to conduct daily imaging of the 100 largest cities on earth.
According to news from Dauria, the joint project is also part of a "SKOLKOVO" investment in the new Silk Road initiative. Sergey Ivanov, General Director of Dauria, offered this via the agency's Facebook:
"Our company, as a pioneer of private Astronautics in Russia, is strategically focused on the development of new market niches and the use of space technologies. Monitoring cities and metropolises is extremely important to the Russian Federation, China, and other Asian countries, which support over half of the urban population of the world. Currently there are no solutions allowing unprecedented imaging frequency and resolution so that we can observe all aspects of the functioning of cities, industries, mining and transportation infrastructure. Urban Observer can be a extremely important element of ensuring the development of Sino-Russian infrastructure projects"
Also according to the news, Urban Observer will monitor forests and farmland in high resolution via the remote sensing technologies capable with the Auriga micro-satellites. The agreement was signed in the framework of the Second Russian-Chinese EXPO in Harbin (China), which was attended by the Deputy Prime Minister of the Russian Federation D. O. Rogozin and Senior Vice-President on innovations of SKOLKOVO Foundation V. M. Belov.