SMOS : the "Global water cycle mission"


Soil Moisture and Ocean Salinity

SMOS (Soil Moisture and Ocean Salinity) mission is a joint ESA / CNES / CDTI Earth Observation program. The SMOS mission proposed by CESBIO has been selected as the 2nd Earth Explorer Opportunity Mission. The SMOS satellite was launched the November 2, 2009.

The objective of the SMOS mission is to provide Soil Moisture (SM) and Ocean Salinity (OS) maps. Both SM and OS are key variables in climate monitoring, surface / vegetation / atmosphere transfers, and ocean / atmosphere cycles.

The SMOS Satellite Control Centre will be adapted by CNES from generic PROTEUS ground segment and installed in Toulouse within the CNES premises. A SMOS Mission Centre dedicated to level 1 and 2 products, is being developed and located in the ESA / Villafranca centre. A specific Data Processing Centre dedicated to level 3 and 4 products is being developed by CNES (CATDS).

 More informations on the mission : SMOS website at ESA , SMOS website at CNES


CATDS : the french ground segment for the SMOS Level 3 and 4 data

The Centre Aval de Traitement des Données SMOS (CATDS), developped by the CNES in collaboration with the CESBIO and IFREMER, is dedicated to :

  • Product and distribute SMOS L3/L4 products (from L1B products from the ESA Data Processing Ground Segment)
  • Reprocess SMOS L3/L4 products when necessary
  • Propose improvements of the L0 to L2 processing chains (possibly helping to fine tune the calibration aspects) ; once validated, these algorithms will be proposed for a transfer to ESA Data Processing Ground Segment.
  • Provide services & hot-line support to L3/L4 users
  • Develop, test and validate algorithms for L3 and L4 processing chains, in close cooperation with the scientific community

The CATDS is made up of 3 centers :