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Active Sensor Information for Radio Astronomers

Here you will find information on active sensors for radio astronomers in order to help protect radio astronomy receivers from damaging interference.

Cloudsat Information

Per Resolution SFCG 24-2 (PDF, 160 KB), orbital information on the Cloudsat Mission utlizing the 94.0-94.1 GHz allocation can be found on the Cloudsat website. This includes both Cloudsat orbital elements and orbital predictions.

NOTE:The Cloudsat mission is still operational but is only operated during the sunlit portion of the orbit due to battery issues. It is expected to be operational into sometime in 2021.

Cloudsat orbital elements and orbital predictions will continue to be available on the Cloudsat website.

Two-Line Element Ephemeris Data

NORAD Two-Line Element (TLE) ephermeris data for Earth orbiting objects can be found here. Satellite tracking software is also available.

CEOS Earth Observation Handbook

The Committee on Earth Observation Satellites (CEOS) maintains an on-line version of its Earth Observation Handbook. This Handbook contains useful information on all Earth observation satellites currently operating.

ITU Database Information

The International Telecommunications Union - Radiocommunications Sector (ITU-R) maintains a database of all space systems (i.e., satellites) registered with the ITU. The Space Network Systems (SNS) database contains all technical information available in ITU filings for such systems.

Active Sensors Look-Up Table

Currently Operational Spaceborne Active Sensor Missions (Updated: November 2016)
MissionAgencyITU NameFrequency (MHz)Bandwidth (MHz)RadiatedPower (W)
Sentinel-1A and -1B(2 satellites active at 180 degrees orbital separation) (SAR)ESASentinel-15405Up to 100 (mode dependent)5200
Sentinel-3A (Altimeter)ESASentinel-35410/13575320/3509 in C-band, 20 in Ku-band
Cryosat-2 (Altimeter)ESACryosat-213575350Low res 29 SAR/SARln 21.6
Metop-A and -B ASCAT (Scatterometer)EUMETSATMETOP52550.5120
ALOS-2 PALSAR-2JAXAALOS-21240, 1260, 128042/84.2/42.26120
RADARSAT-2 SARCSARADARSAT-2C RADARSAT-2D RADARSAT-2E RADARSAT-2F530011.6, 17.3, 30, 50, 1005000
COSMO-SkyMed (SAR)ASICOSMO SKYMED960041 to 4002800
TerraSAR-X SAR TANDEM-XDLRTERRASAR9650150, 3002260
JASON-2 (OSTM) SSALT (Altimeter)CNESJASON25300, 1357532017, 25
JASON-3 (OSTM) SSALT (Altimeter)CNESJASON35300, 1357532017, 25
RAPIDSCAT (Scatterometer)NASARAPIDSCAT134000.380
CLOUDSAT (CPR)NASAUSCLOUDSAT940500.361500
GPM DPR (Precipitation Radar)JAXAGPM13600, 355503.36 x 21000, 150
HY-2A (Altimeter)NSOAS (CNSA)HY-25410, 13580320, 3201.5, 2.5
HY-2A (Scatterometer)NSOAS (CNSA)HY-213256516
OCEANSAT-2 (Scatterometer)ISROOCEANSAT-213515, 355000.4, 0.41140
RISAT-1/-2 (SAR)ISRORISAT5250-547518.75 to 754000
HJ-1C (SAR)CNCDR (CNSA)HJ-1-ABC320060300
ALTIKA (Altimeter)CNES/ISROSARAL357504802

This table is also available in MS-Word format. Additional information on the Metop sensors is also available. At SFCG-31, document SF31-9DR1 on "Potential Damage to RAS Sites by EESS (active) Systems" was presented by NASA providing calculations of the power levels received vis-à-vis power levels given in Report ITU-R RA.2188. At SFCG-36, a new Action Item was adopted to further refine this work.

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This page last updated on 16-November-16 at 17:15 ET