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Announcement of Opportunity for ALOS Data

28 September 2005

The European Space Agency (ESA) announces an opportunity to conduct scientific research and application development in Earth Observation using data from ALOS in conjunction with ERS, ENVISAT, CryoSat and Proba. The deadline for submission is 19 December 2005.

Minimize About this Mission



ALOS was a Japanese Earth-Observation satellite, developed by JAXA. The objective of the mission was to provide the user community with data of sufficient resolution to be able to generate 1:25,000 scale maps. ALOS mission objectives set by JAXA were to:

  • Develop digital elevation models (DEMs) and related geographic data products
  • Perform regional observation for 'sustainable development' (harmonization between Earth environment and development)
  • Conduct disaster monitoring around the world
  • Survey natural resources
  • Develop sensor and satellite technology for future Earth-observing satellites
The mission includes optical and an active L-band microwave sensor payload whose high-resolution data may be used for environmental and hazard monitoring. ESA will provide the European/African node for data distribution.

In June 2006, ESA and JAXA signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) for the ALOS Data European Node (ADEN). ESA is responsible for serving all ALOS users resident in the ADEN zone, i.e. Europe, Africa and Middle East.

On 22 April 2011, the ALOS satellite was lost due to a power anomaly. However, ESA continues to distribute ALOS archived data to users residing in the ADEN-zone (i.e. Europe, Africa, Middle East).


Facts and figures 
Operators JAXA (Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency)
Date of Launch 24 January 2006
Status Operations terminated, archive available
Orbit Height 691.65 km
Orbit Type Sun-synchronous near-recursive circular
Repeat Cycle 46 days (with a sub-cycle of 2 days for event monitoring)
Resolution 2.5 m / 10 m multispectral/10-100m SAR
Swath Width 35 – 70 Km/70km/350km
Onboard Sensors provided under TPM
  • PRISM (Panchromatic Remote-sensing Instrument for Stereo Mapping)
  • AVNIR-2 (Advanced Visible and Near-Infrared Radiometer - 2)
  • PALSAR (Phased Array L-band Synthetic Aperture Radar)