Artist’s impression of MERLIN

Artist’s impression of MERLIN
The German-French MERLIN satellite will measure the methane concentration in Earth's atmosphere from 2021. MERLIN is based on the new satellite bus 'Myriade Evolutions' developed by CNES together with the French aerospace industry. The satellite payload - a so-called LIDAR (LIght Detection And Ranging) instrument, which can also conduct measurements at night and through thin clouds, is being developed and constructed in Germany on behalf of the DLR Space Administration, funded by the Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Energy (BMWi). The core part of the instrument is a laser, which can send out light pulses on two different wavelengths and thus measure the methane concentration at all latitudes with great precision regardless of sunlight.

CNES/Illustration David DUCROS