UVSQ-SAT, a pathfinder cubesat mission for observing essential climate variables

Mustapha Meftah, Luc Damé, Philippe Keckhut, Slimane Bekki, Alain Sarkissian, Alain Hauchecorne, Emmanuel Bertran, Jean Paul Carta, David Rogers, Sadok Abbaki, Christophe Dufour, Pierre Gilbert, Laurent Lapauw, André Jean Vieau, Xavier Arrateig, Nicolas Muscat, Philippe Bove, Éric Sandana, Ferechteh Teherani, Tong LiGilbert Pradel, Michel Mahé, Christophe Mercier, Agne Paskeviciute, Kevin Segura, Alicia Berciano Alba, Ahmed Aboulila, Loren Chang, Amal Chandran, Pierre Richard Dahoo, Alain Bui

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

18 Scopus citations


The UltraViolet and infrared Sensors at high Quantum efficiency onboard a small SATellite (UVSQ-SAT) mission aims to demonstrate pioneering technologies for broadband measurement of the Earth's radiation budget (ERB) and solar spectral irradiance (SSI) in the Herzberg continuum (200-242 nm) using high quantum efficiency ultraviolet and infrared sensors. This research and innovation mission has been initiated by the University of Versailles Saint-Quentin-en-Yvelines (UVSQ) with the support of the International Satellite Program in Research and Education (INSPIRE). The motivation of the UVSQ-SAT mission is to experiment miniaturized remote sensing sensors that could be used in the multi-point observation of Essential Climate Variables (ECV) by a small satellite constellation. UVSQ-SAT represents the first step in this ambitious satellite constellation project which is currently under development under the responsibility of the Laboratory Atmospheres, Environments, Space Observations (LATMOS), with the UVSQ-SAT CubeSat launch planned for 2020/2021. The UVSQ-SAT scientific payload consists of twelve miniaturized thermopile-based radiation sensors for monitoring incoming solar radiation and outgoing terrestrial radiation, four photodiodes that benefit from the intrinsic advantages of Ga2O3 alloy-based sensors made by pulsed laser deposition for measuring solar UV spectral irradiance, and a new three-axis accelerometer/gyroscope/compass for satellite attitude estimation. We present here the scientific objectives of the UVSQ-SAT mission along the concepts and properties of the CubeSat platform and its payload. We also present the results of a numerical simulation study on the spatial reconstruction of the Earth's radiation budget, on a geographical grid of 1° x 1° degree latitude-longitude, that could be achieved with UVSQ-SAT for different observation periods.

Original languageEnglish
Article number92
JournalRemote Sensing
Issue number1
StatePublished - 1 Jan 2020


  • Carbon nanotubes
  • Earth's radiation budget
  • GaO
  • Nanosatellite remote sensing
  • Photodiodes
  • Solar-terrestrial relations
  • Thermopiles
  • UV solar spectral irradiance


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