Anna University established the Institute of Remote Sensing (IRS) in 1982 with the funds provided by TamilNadu Government. Over the years, the infra structural facilities have been gradually built-up using development grants mainly from Ministry of Human Resource Development, University Grants Commission, Federal Republic of Germany, Department of Space, Government of India and Department of Agriculture of Government of TamilNadu. At present, the Institute is rated as one of best in the Country in the areas of Remote Sensing, Geographic Information System and large-scale mapping. The Institute functions as an autonomous unit of the Anna University governed by an executive committee headed by the vice-chancellor. The Tamil Nadu Government provides the recurring grants for maintenance. As an externally assisted project, the Federal Republic of Germany has provided assistance worth 7 million DM towards equipment, exchange of staff and for conducting a 4-year engineering Under Graduate programme " B. E. Geoinformatics " which is the only program of its kind in this country. The institute has about 2400 sq.mts. of built-up space for various laboratories, equipped with sophisticated equipment worth Rs. 150 million.
- To transfer remote Sensing Technology and its application to various user agencies through Training Programmes/ Pilot Projects
- To provide academic support to under graduate / post-graduate programmes of the University in the discipline of Remote Sensing and GIS.
- To provide extension services to the user agencies in advisory capacity or by undertaking operational projects as service provider.
- To develop a data bank consisting of temporal and spatial data products.
- To undertake R & D projects and organize Workshops and Seminars to promote the cause of Remote Sensing Technology.