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About EarthCARE


ESA's EarthCARE (Cloud, Aerosol and Radiation Explorer) mission - expected to be launched in 2024 - is the largest and most complex Earth Explorer to date, and will advance our understanding of the role that clouds and aerosols play in reflecting incident solar radiation back into space and trapping infrared radiation emitted from Earth's surface.

EarthCARE is a joint venture between ESA and JAXA (Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency).

EarthCARE Objectives


EarthCARE will employ high-performance lidar and radar technology that has never been flown in space before, with the objective to deliver unprecedented datasets to allow scientists to study the relationship of clouds, aerosols and radiation at accuracy levels that will significantly improve our understanding of these highly variable parameters.


EarthCARE Instruments

The Atmospheric Lidar (ATLID) will provide vertical profiles of aerosols and thin clouds. It will operate at a wavelength of 355 nm and have a high-spectral resolution receiver and depolarisation channel.

The Cloud Profiling Radar (CPR) will provide vertical profiles measurements of clouds and have the capability to observe vertical velocities of cloud particles through Doppler measurements. It will operate at 94GHz.

The Multi-Spectral Imager (MSI) on EarthCARE will provide across-track information on clouds and aerosols with channels in the visible, near infrared, shortwave- and thermal infrared.

The Broad-Band Radiometer (BBR) will provide measurements of top-of-the-atmosphere radiances and fluxes. It will have one short-wave and one long-wave channel with three fixed viewing directions pointing in nadir and aft-directions.

EarthCARE Data


ESOV Software Tools

ESOV (Earth Observation Swath and Orbit Visualisation) provides the means to visualise the instrument swaths of all ESA Earth Observation satellites and assist in understanding where and when satellite measurements are made and ground contact is possible.