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On Tuesday 2 May TNO has received formal approval from ESA to deliver the VNS Flight Model Instrument to British company Surrey Satellite Technology Ltd (SSTL). The VNS instrument will be integrated together with the Thermal Infra Red camera module of SSTL to create the Multi Spectral Imager (MSI).
MSI is one of the four instruments that will be gathering data on clouds and aerosols during the EarthCARE mission from 2018. The EarthCARE industrial consortium comprises companies from Germany, France, Great Britain, Japan and the Netherlands.
EarthCARE stands for Earth Clouds, Aerosols and Radiation Explorer and will be launched in 2018. During this scientific mission for ESA, Earth observations will be undertaken continuously from a height of 400 km. The entire Earth’s surface will be surveyed once every 25 days, which will add to our knowledge about the interactions between clouds, aerosols and the terrestrial atmosphere. The VNS Flight Model Instrument, developed by TNO, is an optical instrument for measuring the reflection of clouds and the Earth’s surface in the Visible Spectrum (VIS), Near Infra Red (NIR) and Shortwave Infra Red (SWIR) wavelengths.
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