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Proceedings Paper

SeaHawk: an advanced CubeSat mission for sustained ocean colour monitoring
Author(s): John M. Morrison; Hazel Jeffrey; Hessel Gorter; Pamela Anderson; Craig Clark; Alan Holmes; Gene C. Feldman; Frederick S. Patt
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Paper Abstract

Sustained ocean color monitoring is vital to understanding the marine ecosystem. It has been identified as an Essential Climate Variable (ECV) and is a vital parameter in understanding long-term climate change. Furthermore, observations can be beneficial in observing oil spills, harmful algal blooms and the health of fisheries. Space-based remote sensing, through MERIS, SeaWiFS and MODIS instruments, have provided a means of observing the vast area covered by the ocean which would otherwise be impossible using ships alone. However, the large pixel size makes measurements of lakes, rivers, estuaries and coastal zones difficult. Furthermore, retirement of a number of widely used and relied upon ocean observation instruments, particularly MERIS and SeaWiFS, leaves a significant gap in ocean color observation opportunities This paper presents an overview of the SeaHawk mission, a collaborative effort between Clyde Space Ltd., the University of North Carolina Wilmington, Cloudland Instruments, and Goddard Spaceflight Center, funded by the Gordon and Betty Moore Foundation. The goal of the project is to enhance the ability to observe ocean color in high temporal and spatial resolution through use of a low-cost, next-generation ocean color sensor flown aboard a CubeSat. The final product will be 530 times smaller (0.0034 vs 1.81m3) and 115 time less massive (3.4 vs 390.0kg) but with a ground resolution 10 times better whilst maintaining a signal/noise ratio 50% that of SeaWiFs. This paper will describe the objectives of the mission, outline the payload specification and the spacecraft platform to support it.

Paper Details

Date Published: 19 October 2016
PDF: 11 pages
Proc. SPIE 10000, Sensors, Systems, and Next-Generation Satellites XX, 100001C (19 October 2016); doi: 10.1117/12.2241058
Show Author Affiliations
John M. Morrison, Univ. of North Carolina Wilmington (United States)
Hazel Jeffrey, Clyde Space Ltd. (United Kingdom)
Univ. of North Carolina Wilmington (United States)
Hessel Gorter, Clyde Space Ltd. (United Kingdom)
Pamela Anderson, Clyde Space Ltd. (United Kingdom)
Craig Clark, Clyde Space Ltd. (United Kingdom)
Univ. of North Carolina Wilmington (United States)
Alan Holmes, Cloudland Instruments (United States)
Gene C. Feldman, NASA Goddard Space Flight Ctr. (United States)
Frederick S. Patt, NASA Goddard Space Flight Ctr. (United States)


Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 10000:
Sensors, Systems, and Next-Generation Satellites XX
Roland Meynart; Steven P. Neeck; Toshiyoshi Kimura, Editor(s)

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