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Proceedings Paper

The Jason-3 Mission: completing the transition of ocean altimetry from research to operations
Author(s): Parag Vaze; Steven Neeck; Walid Bannoura; Joseph Green; Angelo Wade; Michael Mignogno; Gerard Zaouche; Veronique Couderc; Eric Thouvenot; Francois Parisot
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Paper Abstract

The Jason-3 mission is planned as a follow-on mission to the Ocean Surface Topography Mission/Jason-2, to continue the core satellite altimetry measurements for physical oceanography. In addition, a key long-term vision of the founders of this measurement will come to reality: the transitioning from research to operational applications of this valuable measurement. Jason-3 builds upon the heritage of foundational and transitional missions such as SEASAT (1978), GEOSAT (1985), TOPEX/Poseidon (T/P, 1992), Jason-1 (2001) and OSTM/Jason-2 (2008), which have led to the understanding and development of a wide range of oceanographic applications of satellite altimetry. With the successful development and operation of the TOPEX/Poseidon and Jason-1 missions, the Franco-American cooperation in ocean altimetry has grown with a steady vision of expanding this measurement towards operational applications. As such, the T/P and Jason-1 missions were developed by NASA and CNES, and subsequently NOAA and EUMETSAT have taken on key partnership roles by providing mission operations services for the OSTM/Jason-2 project. For Jason-3, NOAA and EUMETSAT are the lead agencies with CNES and NASA as key partners providing mission development support. With a planned project start in early 2010 and a launch target of mid-2013, Jason-3 is planned as a recurring mission from OSTM/Jason-2 to minimize satellite development risk as well as to ensure the continuity of measurements after OSTM/Jason-2. The Jason-3 satellite is planned to operate at the same 1336 km, 66 deg. inclination reference orbit with essentially the same on-board instrumentation as OSTM/Jason-2. The instrument suite will consist of a dual-frequency Nadir Altimeter, a Microwave Radiometer, and three Precision Orbit Determination instruments (Global Positioning System - GPS, Doppler Orbitography and Radio-positioning Integrated by Satellite -DORIS, and Laser Retroreflector Array - LRA). Fulfilling the goals of moving satellite altimetry onto routine operations will require a close cooperation and coordination of international, multi-agency mission managers, designers, engineers, scientists and operational systems developers. This paper presents the Jason-3 mission formulation and development plans, and highlights the key aspects of making this multidimensional project move towards reality.

Paper Details

Date Published: 13 October 2010
PDF: 5 pages
Proc. SPIE 7826, Sensors, Systems, and Next-Generation Satellites XIV, 78260Y (13 October 2010); doi: 10.1117/12.868543
Show Author Affiliations
Parag Vaze, Jet Propulsion Lab. (United States)
Steven Neeck, National Aeronautics and Space Administration (United States)
Walid Bannoura, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (United States)
Joseph Green, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (United States)
Angelo Wade, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (United States)
Michael Mignogno, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (United States)
Gerard Zaouche, Ctr. National D'Etudes Spatiales (France)
Veronique Couderc, Ctr. National D'Etudes Spatiales (France)
Eric Thouvenot, Ctr. National D'Etudes Spatiales (France)
Francois Parisot, European Organisation for the Explortation of Mereorological Satellites (Germany)

Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 7826:
Sensors, Systems, and Next-Generation Satellites XIV
Roland Meynart; Steven P. Neeck; Haruhisa Shimoda, Editor(s)

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