Sofradir lands infrared detector contract for ESA Sentinel-2 mission
ADS provided two MultiSpectral Imager instruments (MSI) for the Sentinel-2 mission that offer high-resolution infrared optical imagery. The devies will provide high-resolution optical imaging to monitor the Earth and thereby provide continuity for the SPOT (an Earth observation system) and Landsat missions. The MSI will measure the Earth’s reflected radiance in 13 spectral bands from the visible (440 nm) to shortwave infrared (2190 nm). To meet the requirements of the space mission, 12 of Sofradir‘s SWIR detectors are on board the Sentinel-2A satellite that launched earlier today. The remaining 12 devices are assigned to the Sentinel 2B satellite, whose launch is planned for 2016.
Large format SWIR detectors (1200 x 3 effective lines, 15-micron pitch) are highly complex devices that only a handful of manufacturers in the world can produce to space-grade standards. Sofradir is the sole European manufacturer to have its IR detectors deployed in space.
“Sofradir’s lengthening track record in space missions, the maturity of its technology and unfailing performance of its IR detectors in extreme conditions fulfill the criteria that space agencies and equipment makers seek from suppliers,” said Philippe Chorier, the space department director at Sofradir.
Over the past decade, Sofradir has delivered scores of IR detector flight models (close to 70) for space programs.
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