Last night the PROBA-V Cubesat Companion (PVCC) was launched successfully from the ESA launch base in French Guiana (Kourou). PVCC is an ESA in-orbit demonstration mission, initiated by VITO, to push affordable space technology for reliable and cost-effective Earth observation data and services.


The PROBA-V CubeSat Companion (PVCC) is an ESA in-orbit demonstration initiated by VITO Remote Sensing that aims not only to compare the performance of a payload designed for a small satellite on a CubeSat platform, but also to achieve high-quality Earth observation data suitable for monitoring global land surfaces and analysing the impact of climate change.

PVCC carries an identical spectral imager as from the PROBA-V satellite. By using a well-known payload on a smaller platform, we can compare data and improve the calibration of Earth Observation image, improve image processing chains, and support the transition of our space economy. PVCC will contribute to ESA's mission to understand and protect our planet's precious ecosystems in synergy with the Sentinel satellites and other Earth observation platforms. PVCC is part of a series of ESA’s In-Orbit Demonstration campaigns   to provide early flight access to the most promising innovations.

VITO Remote Sensing has more than 25 years of experience in developing and operating satellite -based monitoring systems to track and safeguard the status of our earth’s surface. While governmental supported initiatives like SPOT-Vegetation and PROBA-V paved the way, it’s time to make space technology more affordable and accessible, crucial to create a sustainable balance between our economic, environmental, and social responsibilities. With In-Orbit Demonstration missions like PVCC, VITO wants to stay at the forefront in providing high-quality Earth Observation data and services to support scientific research, environmental monitoring, and decision-making in various domains. PVCC will be used to further enhance our data processing chains and calibration expertise.

PVCC is launched with a Vega launcher. The mission, called VV23, placed multiple payloads into sun-synchronous orbit. PVCC is established by a consortium led by Aerospacelab with partners OIP (subcontractor, responsible for providing the PROBA-V spare spectral imager), the Swedish Space Corporation (ground station in X- and S-bands), and VITO Remote Sensing (subcontractor, responsible for the user segment). The ESA mission is funded by the Belgian Science Policy Office.

About PVCC

PROBA-V Cubesat Companion is an in-orbit demonstration mission to push affordable space technology for reliable and cost-effective Earth observation. ESA’s In-Orbit Demonstration activities exist to provide early flight access to the most promising innovations.

About VITO Remote Sensing

VITO is a leading, international research and advice centre that offers ground-breaking technological solutions that help businesses and policymakers provide a solution for the enormous challenges we are facing during the transition to a more sustainable environment.

VITO’s remote sensing unit has more than 25 years of experience in the processing of satellite, aerial and drone images for various applications, including land use, water quality and the environment. VITO Remote Sensing has built up international expertise in the processing and analysis of various earth observation data. Using innovative image processing techniques (AI, deep learning, etc.) VITO Remote Sensing can deliver useful and objective information as well as operational platforms that enable our national and international end users to act more quickly and effectively.

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