By e2v |
16 November 2011 |
Imaging sensors from e2v were launched into space on October 28, 2011 aboard NASA's new Earth observation satellite--the National Polar-orbiting Operational Environmental Satellite System Preparatory Project (NPP). The NPP satellite will measure global climate changes and key weather variables, and is the first mission designed to collect critical data to improve weather forecasts in the short-term and increase our understanding of long-term climate change.
The custom-designed e2v imaging sensors use a proprietary back-illumination technology to optimize performance in the optical wavebands of interest. They have been subjected to a rigorous qualification process to ensure that they can withstand the requirements of this operational mission. The satellite carries five instruments to capture data on the environment such as the ozone layer, land cover, atmospheric temperatures, and ice cover--parameters critical to global change science. The e2v imaging sensors equip the Ozone Mapping and Profiler Suite (OMPS) built by Ball Aerospace & Technologies Corp. (Boulder, CO), an advanced suite of three hyperspectral instruments that measure the ozone by collecting light from the sun that has been reflected off of the atmosphere. Ozone molecules absorb particular frequencies of light and these absorption signatures are used to calculate the amount of ozone present over the entire globe. Ozone is an important molecule in the atmosphere because it partially blocks harmful ultraviolet light from the sun.
Jon Kemp, marketing manager for imaging at e2v said, "We are extremely pleased to have supplied sensors for the OMPS instrument on the NPP satellite. We are again enabling Ball Aerospace & Technologies Corp. to supply a high performance instrument for NASA's Earth observation mission, which will extend our knowledge of our world."