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TopSat
TopSat: The Mission

TopSat: The Mission

TopSat. launched in 2005, is based on an SSTL-150 satellite platform which uses controlled spacecraft manoeuvres to increase the exposure time of images. This ensures high-resolution images can be obtained, even in poor light. The single instrument on board is an extremely powerful camera capable of collecting 17 x 17 km images of the earth with a panchromatic (black and white) resolution of 2.5 metres and a multispectral (colour) resolution of 5 metres.  The camera was designed at STFC Rutherford Appleton Laboratory.

TopSat images can be used for a variety of applications including mapping or land-use monitoring. Images are used by a variety of customers including the Ministry of Defence and UK universities. TopSat images are also being provided free of charge to relief agencies responding to disasters anywhere in the world.

By tilting the satellite within its orbit, the operations team can image the same target anywhere on the Earth within three days. 

QinetiQ developed the initial concept for the mission, and helped to build the consortium of organisations that worked on it. QinetiQ was also the mission's prime contractor and was involved in providing the on board payload control and parts of the mission control system. QinetiQ now owns the satellite and is responsible for its day-to-day operations.

Satellite Data

Name:
TopSat

Customer:
QinetiQ/BNSC/UK MoD

Mission:
Earth Observation

Mass:
113kg

Platform:
SSTL150

Launch Data

Launch Date:
28 October 2005

Launch Site:
Plesetsk Kosmodrome, Russia

Launcher:
COSMOS-3M

Orbit:
686km

Press Releases

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