Encyclopedia Astronautica
SPOT-1-2-3


French earth land resources satellite. 3 launches, 1986.02.22 (SPOT 1) to 1993.09.26 (SPOT 3). SPOT was the French government-sponsored civil earth observation program, with support from Belgium and Sweden.

A single SPOT satellite provided complete coverage of the Earth every 26 days. Image products from SPOT were handled by a commercial entity, SPOT-Image Corp.

The spacecraft was 3-Axis stabilized to 0.1 deg using momentum wheels. A single solar array generated 1000 W (BOL) power. Downlink at 8 GHz and 2 x 25 Mbps. A hydrazine propulsion system provided orbit maintenance.

The HRV (High Resolution Visible) imaging payload provided 20 meter resolution multispectral imagery and 10 meter panchromatic imagery using push-broom sensors. HRV covered the following spectral bands: 0.5 - 0.59 m, 0.61 - 0.68 m, 0.79 - 0.89 m; in addition to the panchromatic band: 0.51 - 0.73 m. The field of view was 4.13 deg in both modes (multispectral and panchromatic) with 3000 pixels per multispectral line and 6000 pixels per panchromatic line. The observed strip was 60 km wide (swath width). On-board recorder capacity was 22 minutes for both modes. The HRV mass was 250 kg. The spacecraft carried two identical HRVs to provide a total of 117 km swath (with 3 km overlap).

AKA: Satellite Probatoire d'Observation de la Terre.
Gross mass: 1,869 kg (4,120 lb).
Height: 3.50 m (11.40 ft).
Span: 15.60 m (51.10 ft).
First Launch: 1986.02.22.
Last Launch: 1993.09.26.
Number: 3 .

More... - Chronology...


Associated Countries
See also
  • Ariane First successful European commercial launch vehicle, developed from L3S Europa launch vehicle replacement design. Development of the Ariane 1 was authorised in July 1973, took eight years, and cost 2 billion 1986 Euros. More...

Associated Launch Vehicles
  • Ariane French orbital launch vehicle. First successful European commercial launch vehicle, developed from L3S Europa launch vehicle replacement design. Development of the Ariane 1 was authorised in July 1973, took eight years, and cost 2 billion 1986 Euros. More...
  • Ariane 1 French orbital launch vehicle. First version of the Ariane launch vehicle. More...
  • Ariane 4 French orbital launch vehicle. The ultimate Ariane development. Compared with the Ariane 2/3, the Ariane 4 featured stretched first (61%) and third stages, a strengthened structure, new propulsion bay layouts, new avionics, and the Spelda dual-payload carrier. The basic 40 version used no strap-on motors, while the Ariane 42L, 44L, 42P, 44P, and 44LP versions used varous combinations of solid and liquid propellant strap-on motors). Development was authorised in January 1982, with the objective of increasing payload by 90%. Total development cost 476 million 1986 ECU's. More...
  • Ariane 40 French orbital launch vehicle. 3 stage core vehicle with original Ariane H10 upper stage. A fully fueled Ariane core cannot lift off the ground without strap-on liquid or solid motors. When Ariane 4 is launched in this configuration, the propellant tanks of the first and second stages are not completely filled. More...

Associated Manufacturers and Agencies
  • CNES French agency overseeing development of spacecraft. Centre National d'Etudes Spatiales, Paris, France. More...
  • ESA European agency overseeing development of rockets and spacecraft. European Space Agency, Europe. More...

Associated Programs
  • SPOT Systeme Probatoire pour l'Observation de la Terre - French remote sensing satellite network. More...

Bibliography
  • McDowell, Jonathan, Jonathan's Space Home Page (launch records), Harvard University, 1997-present. Web Address when accessed: here.
  • JPL Mission and Spacecraft Library, Jet Propulsion Laboratory, 1997. Web Address when accessed: here.
  • McDowell, Jonathan, Launch Log, October 1998. Web Address when accessed: here.

Associated Launch Sites
  • Kourou After the agreement with newly independent Algeria for France to evacuate their launch sites in that country, a location near Biscarosse was selected for French missile testing. However since only launches westwards across the Bay of Biscay could be made from this site, it was unsuitable for France's Diamant orbital launch vehicle. After reviewing 14 potential sites, a location in the South American French colony of Guiana was selected. This would allow over-water launches to a tremendous range of possible orbital inclinations -- from -100.5 deg to 1.5 deg. Being near the equator, it would provide the maximum assist from the earth's rotation for launches into equatorial orbits. The decision was formalized in April 1964 and in July 1966 ELDO chose the site for future launches of the Europa II launch vehicle. More...

SPOT-1-2-3 Chronology


1986 February 22 - . 01:44 GMT - . Launch Site: Kourou. Launch Complex: Kourou ELA1. LV Family: Ariane. Launch Vehicle: Ariane 1. LV Configuration: Ariane 1 V16.
  • SPOT 1 - . Payload: Spot 1 / Viking. Mass: 1,830 kg (4,030 lb). Nation: France. Agency: CNES. Program: SPOT. Class: Earth. Type: Earth resources satellite. Spacecraft: SPOT-1-2-3. USAF Sat Cat: 16613 . COSPAR: 1986-019A. Apogee: 826 km (513 mi). Perigee: 824 km (512 mi). Inclination: 98.7000 deg. Period: 101.40 min. Summary: Remote sensing satellite. Registration 1986-1.B.

1990 January 22 - . 01:35 GMT - . Launch Site: Kourou. Launch Complex: Kourou ELA2. LV Family: Ariane. Launch Vehicle: Ariane 40. LV Configuration: Ariane 40 V35.
  • SPOT 2 - . Mass: 1,870 kg (4,120 lb). Nation: France. Agency: CNES. Program: SPOT. Class: Earth. Type: Earth resources satellite. Spacecraft: SPOT-1-2-3. USAF Sat Cat: 20436 . COSPAR: 1990-005A. Apogee: 826 km (513 mi). Perigee: 825 km (512 mi). Inclination: 98.7000 deg. Period: 101.40 min. Summary: Remote sensing. Earth observation satellite. Registration 1990-1-B..

1993 September 26 - . 01:45 GMT - . Launch Site: Kourou. Launch Complex: Kourou ELA2. LV Family: Ariane. Launch Vehicle: Ariane 40. LV Configuration: Ariane 40 V59.
  • SPOT 3 - . Payload: Spot 3. Mass: 1,907 kg (4,204 lb). Nation: France. Agency: CNES. Program: SPOT. Class: Earth. Type: Earth resources satellite. Spacecraft: SPOT-1-2-3. USAF Sat Cat: 22823 . COSPAR: 1993-061A. Apogee: 823 km (511 mi). Perigee: 821 km (510 mi). Inclination: 98.7000 deg. Period: 101.30 min. Summary: Remote sensing..

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