The satellites will carry several instruments (JPG, 100 KB) to support science goals. A Radar Altimeter will bounce signals off the ocean surface. Sea surface height will be determined based on the time it takes each pulse to travel from the satellite to the ocean and back again. An Advanced Microwave Radiometer (AMR) will retrieve the amount of water vapor between the satellite and ocean, which affects the travel speed of radar pulses. Radio Occultation Antennas will measure the delay of radio signals between Jason-CS and global navigation satellites (GPS) as they slice through different layers of the atmosphere. Other onboard instruments will be used to precisely determine the satellite’s position (DORIS, Laser Retroreflector Array), perform data downlinks (S-band and X-band antennas), and supply power (Solar Array).
Partners and Responsibilities:
- Advanced Microwave Radiometer (AMR-C) and its data processor;
- Global Navigation Satellite System - Radio Occultation (GNSS-RO) instruments and associated data products;
- Laser Retroreflector Array (LRA);
- Spacecraft integration and test activity support;
- Launch services; and
- Launch and Early Orbit Phase (LEOP), satellite commissioning, and routine operations support.
- European Space Agency (ESA)
- Sentinel-6 A and B satellites;
- Radar Altimeter;
- GNSS-Precise Orbit Determination (POD) and DORIS receivers;
- Altimeter ground data processor;
- Command and control of spacecraft though LEOP phases; and
- Satellite in-orbit verification, commissioning, and routine operations support.
- Centre National d'Études Spatiales (CNES)
- Precise orbit determination using GNSS-POD, DORIS and 60 associated ground stations;
- Assessment of mission performance.
- European Organisation for the Exploitation of Meteorological Satellites (EUMETSAT)
- Overall system design activities coordination;
- Ground segment development, implementation, and validation;
- Command and control of operating satellites after LEOP phases;
- Operational altimetry data processor;
- Near-real-time and offline data processing; and
- Dissemination of altimetry and other data products.
- National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA)
- U.S. ground stations for telemetry data downlink and spacecraft commanding; and
- Dissemination of near-real-time data products.
NASA, ESA, and EUMETSAT will provide mission management and system engineering support. NASA and EUMETSAT will be responsible for long-term archives of altimetry data products. All partners will be involved with the selection of science investigators.