Mission horizons - experiment at a glance

DE­SIS - DLR Earth Sens­ing Imag­ing Spec­trom­e­ter

Hyperspectral sensor system
Hy­per­spec­tral sen­sor sys­tem
Credit: DLR (CC-BY 3.0)

Hyperspectral sensor system

DE­SIS ac­quires im­age da­ta on 235 close­ly spaced chan­nels from the vi­su­al to the in­frared spec­trum (be­tween 400 and 1000 nanome­ters).

With increasing global industrialisation, the impact of humans on Earth’s food supply is constantly growing. Using hyperspectral data, scientists can monitor and develop the dynamic relationships between geophysical parameters on an intercontinental scale. The DESIS imaging spectrometer can depict the land surface, oceans and atmosphere with great accuracy. Unlike conventional satellite-based spectrometers, DESIS has a high number of channels in the 400 to 1000 nanometre range. The instrument records hyperspectral data using 235 channels with a spectral range of 2.5 nanometres, covering the visible and near infrared spectrum. It has been developed to obtain a pixel resolution (ground sample distance) of 30 metres from the 400-kilometre orbit of the ISS. The spectrometer has been developed to operate on the MUSES instrument platform. In June 2018, DESIS will be launched to the International Space Station (ISS) on board a SpaceX rocket. From there, DESIS will observe Earth’s surface around the clock, providing experts with information about the current state of, and any changes to the land and ocean surface. This will enable them to better understand environmental processes or make statements about the current state of forest and agricultural land, in order to improve global food production, for example. In addition, data from the ISS instrument will quickly be available in the event of a disaster, enabling it to assist emergency services with their deployments. The developers aim to combine the data from all MUSES instruments and thereby develop advanced methods for remote sensing. The remote sensing instruments can also be returned to Earth after their operational life of between three and five years, in order to more closely examine the impact of the space environment on them.

  • Elke Heinemann
    Ger­man Aerospace Cen­ter (DLR)
    Pub­lic Af­fairs and Com­mu­ni­ca­tions
    Telephone: +49 2203 601-2867
    Fax: +49 2203 601-3249

  • Volker Schmid
    Ger­man Aerospace Cen­ter (DLR)
    Space Ad­min­is­tra­tion
    Hu­man Space­flight, ISS and Ex­plo­ration
    Telephone: +49 228 447-305
    Fax: +49 228 447-737
    Königswinterer Straße 522-524
    53227 Bonn
  • Uwe Knodt
    Ger­man Aerospace Cen­ter (DLR)

    Strate­gic Ser­vices, Head of De­part­ment
    Telephone: +49 2203 601-2857
    Linder Höhe
    51147 Köln

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