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CHAMP Mission 5 Years in Orbit

  • Christoph Reigber
  • Hermann Lühr
  • Ludwig Grunwaldt
  • Christoph Förste
  • Rolf König
  • Heiner Massmann
  • Carsten Falck
Chapter

Summary

In the summer of 2000 the geo-research satellite CHAMP was launched into orbit. Its innovative payload arrangement and its low injection altitude allow CHAMP to simultaneously collect almost uninterrupted measurement series relating to the Earth gravity and magnetic fields at low altitude. In addition, CHAMP sounds the neutral atmosphere and ionosphere using GPS observations onboard. After 60 months in orbit one arrives at a very positive conclusion for the CHAMP mission. The CHAMP satellite and its instruments have been operated almost uninterruptedly since launch. The great performance of the satellite subsystems and of the mission operation specialists has made it possible to keep CHAMP in the science operation mode for most of the time and in addition to lift its orbit two times. After a series of calibration and validation activities in the course of the mission, which included a number of onboard software updates and parameter adjustments, CHAMP has been providing excellent measurements from its state of the art instruments for now more than 4 years. The effective and steadily functioning of the CHAMP Science Data System and the supporting tracking networks has made it possible to provide large quantities of pre-processed data, precision data products and auxiliary information to hundreds of registered users in an almost uninterrupted manner. This was only possible due to the funding of the project DACH (CHAMP Data Acquisition and Data Use) within the ‘GEOTECHNOLOGIEN’ R+D programme of the BMBF. With the orbit altitude being presently about 60 km higher than originally planned for mid 2005, CHAMP will very likely orbit the Earth for another 3 years at quite low altitude. This mission extension at low altitude will make CHAMP a pioneering long-duration mission for geo-potential research and sounding of the atmosphere.

Key words

CHAMP Mission overview Science Data System achievements 

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References

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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2006

Authors and Affiliations

  • Christoph Reigber
    • 1
  • Hermann Lühr
    • 1
  • Ludwig Grunwaldt
    • 1
  • Christoph Förste
    • 1
  • Rolf König
    • 1
  • Heiner Massmann
    • 1
  • Carsten Falck
    • 1
  1. 1.Dept. 1 ‘Geodesy and Remote Sensing’GeoForschungsZentrum Potsdam (GFZ)PotsdamGermany

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