Space LiDAR Approved

Red Orbit and the BBC reported that Europe’s EarthCARE space laser mission was given a green light to move forward with the program, despite a likely 30 percent increase in the program’s final costs.

The satellite will be put into orbit to study what type of role clouds and atmospheric particles have in a changing climate.

Astrium-France, the primary contractor for the spacecraft, has had an extremely difficult time finding a design that will reliably work in the vacuum of space. A re-configuration of the lidar has added close to 200 million dollars (140m euros) to the projected total cost of the mission. It has also delayed the mission’s launch date to 2016 — two years later than previously planned.

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1 Response to Space LiDAR Approved

  1. Why is space hardening a lidar system so hard when the technology is well established and operational? NASA has had the A-Train satellite system with the CALIPSO lidar orbiting for years, MOLA, Mars Orbiter Laser Altimeter is very successful and there are several others. Other new space lidars including Doppler lidars have been tested and are in development. They did not do a simple literature search if you believe the article.

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