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Electronics Production | December 19, 2011

RUAG Space supplies NG Earth observation satellites

RUAG Space contributes to new generation Earth observation satellites.
Early in the morning of December 17, the second Soyuz mission takes off from Kourou in French Guyana to deliver the French Earth observation satellite Pleiades-1 in orbit. Pleiades will be equipped with an on-board command and data handling system from RUAG Space.

Pleiades is a new generation optical Earth Observation satellite capable to deliver images of the Earth with a sub meter resolution The satellites are small and agile, and will be able to re-visit the same spot on Earth daily. Scheduling of observation tasks is performed three times a day and can be made up to two hours before a passage. The second Pleiades satellite will be launched early 2013. The Pleiades satellites have been developed by Astrium in Toulouse on behalf of the French Space Agency, CNES, with Thales Alenia Space responsible for the optical instrument.

RUAG Space in Sweden and Austria have jointly developed the on-board command and data handling system. This product is called OBMU (On-Board Management Unit). The OBMU will handle communication with ground control stations and thus receive commands to control the satellite and deliver health status information to ground from the different units in the satellite. The Pleiades OBMU represents a step forward in space computers. The ESA laser radar mission Aeolus benefits from reusing a similar product.

RUAG Space has delivered two fully redundant Flight Models, one Engineering Model and two Software Development Models to Astrium. RUAG Space in Austria has developed two boards for diverse satellite interfaces.

“We are proud of being trusted with this key satellite equipment of the program based on our heritage from earlier Spot satellites and long-standing good relation between Swedish, Austrian and French authorities and industry” says Folke Brundin, Senior VP Marketing & Sales of RUAG Space in Sweden.

Pleiades satellites are smaller, cheaper and more agile than the Spot satellites that have been in uninterrupted service since 1986. Pleiades satellites will deliver 0.7 meter resolution images compared to 2.5 meters for SPOT-5. The Pleiades satellites have a launch mass of one metric ton compared to three tons for Spot-5. The Pleiades satellites consume half the power of the Spot-5 satellite.
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November 11 2018 12:47 pm V11.8.0-2