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Mission Payload Programming & Performance

Optimizing space missions to best serve users

Thanks to its 40 years of experience in Space, CS GROUP has a deep knowledge of space vehicles missions, either scientific, earth observation, navigation and telecom missions. Its experiences with the modelling and simulation of associated payload sensors, allows CS GROUP to design, develop, integrate and maintain user ground segments that are exhaustive and fully optimized for the processing of image or scientific data, to serve users in quasi real-time.

Remote sensing & Image processing

CS GROUP has nearly 60 engineers specialising in remote sensing and image processing, and therefore has a very good understanding of the challenges and expectations of its customers, whether in terms of imaging expertise or the development of processing chains.

Imaging expertise is valued on a daily basis in the definition of treatments, chain prototyping or through the realization of numerous R&T studies for the CNES.

This expertise in remote sensing and satellite image processing includes:

  • Image and signal processing,
  • Radiometric and Geometric expertise,
  • Atmospheric corrections.

The activities in terms of remote sensing and image processing are mainly grouped in the following themes:

  • Space physics,
  • Sensor calibration,
  • Radiative transfer,
  • Atmosphere and cloud correction,
  • Analysis of the quality of geometric and radiometric images,
  • Geometry and image processing: Stereo reconstruction activities (e.g. S2P, CO3D) and data simulation,
  • CALVAL (ex: S2-MPC Sentinel-2 Mission Performance Centre),
  • Creation of value-added products (e.g. KALIDEOS),
  • Open source libraries (e.g. ORFEO Toolbox, SNAP, Rugged…),
  • Optical (ex: Pleiades, SPOT6/7, Pleaides Neo, FalconEye Sentinel 2/3, CO3D, ),
  • Radar (ex: Sentinel 1,…),
  • Altimetry data (ex: SWOT).

Payload Data Ground Segment (PDGS)

The Payload Data Ground Segment (PDGS) is in charge of processing the instrument data. It operationally generates the user products and distributes the level 1C and level 2A processed products. The data detected in real time as well as the data read from the data recorded on board are transmitted directly to the ground or via satellite), then received, converted, demodulated and transferred to the processing facilities for the systematic generation and archiving of level 0 and level 1/2 data products .

It interacts with other major components of the ground segments.

CS GROUP engineers are specialists in the design and execution of these PDGS, and have the following skills, in particular:

  • Global understanding of the system,
  • Knowledge of processor constraints and operating requirements,
  • Knowledge of data formats and associated constraints,
  • Cloud infrastructure and HPC, involving our team of specialists infra,
  • Choreography or orchestration of optimized processing,
  • Optimized processing for cloud infrastructure,
  • System monitoring,
  • Production monitoring with customized KPIs.

In particular, CS Group is developing the migration of Copernicus Sentinel-1 PDGS to the Cloud and the Copernicus Sentinel-2 MPC (Mission Performance Center).

We also bring our expertise in design and development with Big Data and Cloud technologies. In order to meet the increasingly massive needs for data exploitation (satellites & others), it is essential to have the right computing environments and digital tools. The objective is to offer a variety of Big Data frameworks (and/or on-demand applications) adapted to the needs without having to manage the allocation of the necessary IT resources.

CS Group also deploys an innovative solution, combining the latest technologies from the world of Big Data and DevOps, and compatible with any cloud computing provider.

This solution, called SafeScale™, has already been successfully deployed in large-scale production on the Copernicus RUS service, and is now being deployed for the CO3D processing chain, the BIDSRAF project and the S1 PDGS project. The WorldCover, SnapEarth and AI4GEO projects also benefit from this solution.

Mission programming and simulation

The “Mission Programming and Simulations” activities within CSGROUP’ SPACE Business Unit include development, maintenance, AIV/IVV and engineering of Mission software and user ground segments.
Our engineering services range from design implementation to specification writing, including the study and definition of mission algorithms and the implementation of simulators.
On the development side, we work with our customers on user ground segments: programming complex algorithms, managing user requests and their optimization, generating acquisition plans following prioritization rules, all with software ergonomics adapted to the needs.

For many years, CS GROUP engineers have been working on exciting missions such as:

  • « Mission Programming chain » software for PLEIADES
  • The « User Ground Segment » software for CSO
  • PLEIADES, CSO, MicroCarb and CO3D mission simulators as well as ALIS generic simulator.
  • The definition of mission programming algorithms for FalconEye, V2020/Pléiades Néo, Céres, CSO, SVOM, CO3D,...

More than 30 engineers work on these exciting activities within CS Group and on increasingly ambitious projects!