AATSR Project Management

The Advanced Along-Track Scanning Radiometer (AATSR) was designed primarily to measure sea surface temperature (SST) to an accuracy better than 0.3K. The instrument was funded jointly by the UK (70%) and Australian (30%) governments, whilst the ground segment was funded by the UK and ESA. AATSR flew on ESA’s Envisat platform, which was launched in 2002 and operated until 2012.

Exploiting the experience of Space ConneXions staff in managing the procurement of the AATSR instrument and the prototype data processing software from UK industry, in 2004 Defra (later DECC) contracted Space ConneXions to manage the UK components of the AATSR data exploitation activities. The UK activities include:

Space ConneXions also supported DECC in maintaining and developing its relationships with its partners in the AATSR programme, including BNSC/UKSA, the UK Met Office, NERC, ESA, Eumetsat and CSIRO.

In addition to the DECC contracts, Space ConneXions was contracted by ESA to build on existing ESA, DECC and international initiatives by:

The (A)ATSR SST dataset is a key climate variable that feeds into the Met Office Hadley Centre’s climate models. These models are used to provide DECC and international organisations such as the IPCC and UNFCCC with scenarios for future climate change.

More information about the AATSR programme can be found on the ATSR sensors website, which is maintained by Space ConneXions.