Sentinel-4 CCD Headboard Delivered to European Space Agency (ESA)


A bespoke headboard, designed by XCAM to drive a custom CCD image sensor for the Ultraviolet Visible Near-infrared (UVN) instrument aboard the European Space Agency’s Sentinel-4 satellite mission has been successfully delivered to ESA. The mission aims to monitor trace gas concentrations and aerosols in the atmosphere from a geostationary orbit above Europe, in order to support the provision of real-time air quality and climate monitoring as part of the European Commission (EC) and ESA's Earth Observation Programme, Copernicus.

Following intial discussions between XCAM and ESA to understand the scope of the work, a proposal was generated outlining the specifications and work to be undertaken by XCAM for successful delivery of the headboard.

The work which was carried out began with XCAM designing, in conjunction with ESA, the mechanical format of the headboard, the technical specification and requirements of the headboard, and the associated cables required to interface to the cryogenically-cooled test chamber and the Archon controller which was to be used. Next XCAM drew up the headboard circuit schematic, and after approval from ESA, designed the printed circuit board layout for the headboard. After manufacture of the headboard and all cables, XCAM used a grade 5 detector, loaned by ESA, to design the sequencer program which operated the clocks of the detector, and to test that all aspects of the system were fully working. The system, once fully tested, was delivered to ESA with a test report detailing operation of the system.

The delivery of the Sentinel-4 headboard represents a continuation in the design and supply of bespoke image sensor headboards for space applications by XCAM, following previous successes such as headboard design for ESA’s Euclid mission. Contact XCAM today to discuss how we may be able assist with your CCD- and CMOS-based imaging solutions.