Berliner Glas Prisms for a New Era in Earth Observation

The Earth observation satellite EnMAP in space (artistic representation, © OHB System AG)
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The Earth observation satellite EnMAP in space (artistic representation, © OHB System AG)
The Berliner Glas Group is continuously expanding its activities within the space industry.

There are currently five satellites in space that have optical components and systems from the Berliner Glas Group on board – these are all solutions for laser communication in space.

With the Group's newest activity, an additional segment has come into focus: earth observation. The Berliner Glas Group provides an important contribution to the EnMAP satellite mission.

EnMAP (Environmental Mapping and Analysis Program) is a German satellite mission with the goal of observing the Earth. This mission will measure sun rays reflected from the Earth's surface over a wide spectral range.

The spectrometers used deliver hyperspectral data from over 240 small channels of the continuous spectrum of visible light up to near-infrared and create a completely new level of quality for spectroscopic observation of the Earth.

The EnMAP satellite will record data with a ground resolution of 30 meters by 30 meters at an orbit of almost 650 kilometers. A variable orientation of the satellite allows for comparison observations of the same location within four days.

The primary goals of the scientific research using EnMAP are to study the globally linked environmental processes and changes, examine the effects of human interventions into ecosystems and to support the sustainable use of natural resources.

Berliner Glas Prism for the Earth observation satellite EnMAP (© Berliner Glas Group)
Berliner Glas Prism for the Earth observation satellite EnMAP (© Berliner Glas Group)

The launch of the EnMAP satellite is planned for 2019.

Tasked by the German Space Administration (DLR), OHB System AG, one of the three leading aerospace companies in Europe, is responsible for constructing the instrumentation as well as building and starting the satellite.

The system provider belongs to the listed high-technology group OHB SE, where around 2,000 specialists and executives work on key European space programs.

The Berliner Glas Group manufactured four prisms for the VNIR spectrometer and two prisms for the SWIR spectrometer for the EnMAP Earth observation satellite. In addition, spare prisms were also produced in corresponding numbers.

These prisms represent complexly formed glass structures that provide both imaging as well as dispersion functionality.

Berliner Glas already possesses the technological foundation required for all of the procedures necessary to manufacture the prisms. These measurement and production technologies were specially adapted, further developed and quantitatively qualified for the special requirements of the EnMAP prisms.

Additional information and current news about the EnMAP satellite mission can be found on the website www.enmap.org.

The EnMAP project is being carried out on behalf of the German Space Administration (DLR) with funds provided by the Federal Ministry of Economics and Technology, under the project number: 50 EP 0801.

600450 Berliner Glas Prisms for a New Era in Earth Observation glassonweb.com

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