Planetek Hellas signs contract with Airbus for new ESA mission, TRUTHS

Planetek Hellas signs contract with Airbus for new ESA mission, TRUTHS

Athens, February 5th 2021. The now commencing activity for the design and development of European Space Agency’s (ESA) new satellite, TRUTHS, finds Planetek Hellas on board as the company has signed a contract with Airbus Defence & Space UK, ESA’s Prime Contractor for the phase A/B1 of the project.

The TRUTHS mission (Traceable Radiometry Underpinning Terrestrial- and Helio - Studies) aims to establish a traceable space-based climate and calibration observing system to improve confidence in climate-change forecasts – a kind of ‘standards laboratory in space’. TRUTHS will carry a hyperspectral imager to provide benchmark measurements of both incoming solar radiation and outgoing reflected radiation with an unprecedented accuracy, as well as a one-of-a-kind Cryogenic Solar Absolute Radiometer and a unique On-Board Calibration System.

Presently, Planetek Hellas is contracted to assist Airbus in defining the high-level functional requirements of the software linking space & ground segments, and the interfaces towards the ground segment, through phase A. During phase B1, Planetek Hellas will support Airbus in creating the prototype software architecture for the End-to-End Mission Performance & System Simulator (E2EMS) and the Observation Performance Simulator (OPSI) .

«According to the present time schedule of ESA the launch of TRUTHS will happen six to eight years from now. Till then we will be helping to simulate the flying in orbit and operation of the satellite many times, to make sure everything will work nominally when it will be in orbit, at 600km from Earth. This is in simple words the part of the project assigned to Planetek Hellas» says Maria Ieronymaki, Technical Manager at Planetek Hellas.

The TRUTHS satellite is an initiative within ESA’s Earth Watch program and is supported at present by five Member States, with the United Kingdom (85.5%) being the main contributor. Greece (6.2%), Switzerland (5.6%), the Czech Republic (1.5%) and Romania (1.2%) have made smaller yet significant contributions to the Mission.

«We are certainly very pleased that after an international competitive process, Airbus has trusted a Greek SME such as Planetek Hellas, for a significant part of the TRUTHS mission. Our know-how on the design and development of software for space systems (Ground & Space Segment) certainly played a decisive role in the selection, however, it must be said that the decision of the National Delegation of Greece to support the TRUTHS mission in ESA’s last council at ministerial level in 2019 (Space19+), was also very important, essentially paving the way for Greek companies and universities that are generally active in the field of space», said Stelios Bollanos, co-founder and director of Planetek Hellas.

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