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Orbit prediction of MERIS and AATSR with ESOV-NG

Olaf Danne(1), Norman Fomferra(1), Michele Zundo(2) and Montserrat Pinol(2)

(1) Brockmann Consult, Max-Planck-Str. 2, 21502 Geesthacht, Germany
(2) ESTEC, Kepplerlaan, Noordwijk, Netherlands


The roots of ESOV reach back around 20 years ago, when the first lines of FORTRAN code had been developed for the calculation of satellite orbit tracks, sensor swaths and pointing. ESOV has later been recoded in C and has been equipped with a graphical user interface (ESOV Classic). Because a different software version exists for different platform this code has become difficult to maintain and extend, and its look and feel needed modernisation. ESA has therefore decided to develop a new, platform independent Java based version, called ESOV Next Generation (ESOV-NG). The work was contracted to Brockmann Consult and ESOV-NG has been released in 2008.

ESOV-NG is an orbit determination and visualisation software which provides users of various satellites and instruments, including ENVISAT MERIS and AATSR, with all information required for identification of overpasses over a specific area, coincidence of different satellites, information on viewing geometry and which supports generally campaign planning where satellite overpasses are important.

The basic component in Esov NG is referred as Scenario. A Scenario resembles a set of settings for a spacecraft, such as ENVISAT. These settings contain orbital, instrumental and geographical settings as well as regional (in Esov NG referred as zones) and ground station definitions. These settings together describe all necessary elements for calculating orbital swaths and intersection points (e.g. instrument swaths intersecting reception areas of ground stations). Furthermore, a Scenario stores information related to the presentation of its data. It holds an Esov Map, which contains visibility, boundaries and projection information. Thus an Esov Map provides a certain view or perspective onto a Scenario. Style information for all presentable elements is also held within the Scenario. Scenarios and maps can be exported to various representations for subsequent analysis or documentation.


Keywords: ESA European Space Agency - Agence spatiale europeenne, observation de la terre, earth observation, satellite remote sensing, teledetection, geophysique, altimetrie, radar, chimique atmospherique, geophysics, altimetry, radar, atmospheric chemistry