In-Space Validation of Earth Science Technologies
Testing the Next Generation of Earth Science Technology
Program Manager – Sachidananda Babu
The In-Space Validation of Earth Science Technologies Program funds projects that want to test their instruments in space. The program aims to reduce the overall risk of incorporating new technologies into future Earth science missions. Recent advancements in small, standardized satellites and low-cost access to space are rapidly transforming the way technologies are demonstrated and validated. Meaningful risk reduction for hardware components and information systems can be accomplished quickly for future flight instruments.
With rapid advancements in small satellite platforms, InVEST projects have validated many new instruments and information systems by installing them on bread loaf-sized CubeSats. These standardized, modular satellites are relatively inexpensive to build on short time frames and their small volumes and weights make it easier to send multiple on a single rocket.
- NACHOS: Nanosat Atmospheric Chemistry Hyperspectral Observation System
- HyTI: Hyperspectral Thermal Imager
- SNOOPI: Signals of Opportunity P-band Investigation
- CTIM: Compact Thermal Irradiance Monitor
Getting To Space
There are a number of commercial launch providers entering this field to provide access to space. Several government efforts also provide opportunities for small satellite payloads, including:
- NASA Launch Services’ CubeSat Launch Initiative (CSLI) Program, also known as Educational Launch of Nano-Satellites (ELaNa)
- The Space Evaluation Research Board (SERB) within the DoD Space Test Program (STP)
- US Government Rideshare Working Group (USGRWG)
InVEST uses the NASA Research Announcement as its investment vehicle. Links to the full solicitations and awards are listed below.
|Solicitation||Link To Solicitation||Link To Award|
|InVEST ROSES 2020||Solicitation (link)||Awarded Projects|
|InVEST ROSES 2017||Solicitation (link)||Awarded Projects|
|InVEST ROSES 2015||Solicitation (link)||Awarded Projects|
|InVEST ROSES 2012||Solicitation (250 K PDF)||Awarded Projects|
|Space Validation RFI||Solicitation (link)||[not applicable]|
InVEST Project Highlights
Tiny Satellite Sees 'Rainbows' in Clouds
The Hyper-Angular Rainbow Polarimeter is the first CubeSat to fly a polarimeter. It's monitoring clouds and aerosols.
Little Satellite Tracks Global Storms
Radar in a CubeSat, or RainCube, uses experimental technology to see storms by detecting rain and snow with novel instruments.
New CubeSat poised to take Earth’s temperature
The Compact Infrared Radiometer in Space instrument on a CubeSat collects, processes and calibrates infrared images to reveal Earth’s temperature for the first time from a small satellite.