Airbus Defence and Space

Pleiades 1 subjected to the conditions of space

Since March, Pleiades 1 has been undergoing tests at Intespace in Toulouse to simulate its launch environment and the conditions it will encounter in space.

Vibrations and thermal shocks

A first series of tests simulated launch atop the Soyuz booster in spring 2010, subjecting the satellite to several levels of acceleration and measuring induced vibrations.

A second series involved day-night cycling and tested the satellite’s ability to withstand thermal and electromagnetic shocks.

Building up to launch

Pleiades 1’s main telescope was assembled in Cannes by Thales Alenia Space and delivered at the end of July 2008.
It was then mated with the satellite bus in Airbus Defence and Space’s clean room in Toulouse in September 2008.
For the next 6 months, the satellite underwent technical qualification tests to validate bus and instrument performance, and successfully completed satellite tasking and image collection tests.

Pleiades at a glance

Pleiades is a new generation of wide-swath (20 km), very-high-resolution (50 cm) Earth-imaging satellites. Initiated in 2001, the dual-use Pleiades programme comprises two 1,000-kg satellites phased in the same orbit to provide daily revisits of any point on the globe.

Equipped with innovative, latest-generation space technologies like fibre-optic gyros and control moment gyros, Pleiades 1 (PHR1A) and Pleiades 2 (PHR2A) offer great roll and yaw agility. They can acquire imagery anywhere within an 800-km ground strip in less than 25 seconds with a location accuracy better than 3 metres.



PléiadesGeoinformation Services