Biomass monitoring mission for Carbon Assessment (BIOMASS)


For any questions or comments
on this mission, please contact :
Thuy Le Toan at CESBIO

© Copyright 2013 CESBIO, 
All rights reserved


The Biomass space segment consists of a single satellite carrying the P-band (435 MHz, i.e. ~69 cm wavelength) SAR. The satellite configuration is constrained by the accommodation of the very large reflector antenna inside the Vega launcher.

This large antenna must be folded for launch and deployed in orbit to form a stable aperture throughout the mission’s life. The industrial teams investigated different antenna types and folding concepts and selected a reflector-based concept.

Concepts A and B are based on a Large Deployable mesh Reflector (LDR) antenna system consisting of a deployable arm and an unfurlable reflector with a projected aperture of approximately 12 m. For both concepts, the boresight direction of the LDR is orientated such that the SAR acquires images at the right of the satellite ground track.

Launcher :

VEGA is the baseline launcher:

  • Small volume margins with respect to the dynamic envelope
  • Mass margin for the Northrop Grumman based concepts higher than Harris reflector based one

Antares (US) and PSLV (India) are the selected back-up launchers for concepts A and B with ample margins in mass and volume



The primary launch vehicle is Vega, launched from Kourou, French Guiana.

Biomass will be the sole passenger because of its relatively large size and volume.

The stowed configurations inside the Vega fairings of concepts A and B are shown in the figure.

  plan du site sitemap webmaster webmaster crédit credit Copyright 2013 CESBIO, Tous droits réservé