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The German radar satellite TerraSAR-X was launched in June 2007 from the Russian space center at Baikonur. It carries as a payload an active radar sensor which can be operated in several different modes to obtain recordings of various strip widths, resolutions and polarizations. The goal of the mission is to provide high-quality SAR (Synthetic Aperture Radar) X-band data for research and development, science and commercial applications. With its active antenna it can transmit measurements independently of weather, cloud cover and illumination conditions. The X-band uses microwaves of 3 cm wavelength (9.65 GHz frequency) and makes it possible to image the surface with high spatial resolution down to the submeter range.
Table: TerraSAR-X Mission Parameters
4.88 m (length) × 2.4 m (diameter)
Number of instruments
June 15, 2007
Table: TerraSAR-X Orbit Parameters
Orbit altitude (mean)
Orbits per day
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