Author Topic: SpaceX Rideshare Payload : MethaneSat : Q4 2023  (Read 4849 times)

Offline Jansen

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SpaceX Rideshare Payload : MethaneSat : Q4 2023
« on: 01/13/2021 04:15 pm »
Discussion Thread for the launch of the Environmental Defense Fund’s Earth observing MethaneSat

NSF Threads for MethaneSat :
NSF Articles for MethaneSat :

Q4 2023 on Falcon 9 (350kg) to orbit

https://www.methanesat.org/about/
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About MethaneSAT

Methane is a potent greenhouse gas, with more than 80 times the warming power of carbon dioxide over the first 20 years after it is released. At least a quarter of today’s global temperature increases are caused by methane from human sources. And one of the largest sources of these emissions today is the oil and gas industry.

Cutting oil and gas methane emissions is the single fastest, most impactful thing we can do to slow the rate of warming today, even as we work to decarbonize our energy system. Reducing oil and gas methane emissions 45 percent by 2025 would have the same 20-year climate benefit as closing 1,300 coal-fired power plants.



MethaneSAT will provide regular monitoring of regions accounting for more than 80 percent of global oil and gas production, identifying not only the location but also quantifying the emissions rate with unprecedented precision. MethaneSAT will also be able to measure methane from industrial agriculture and other sources.

Unique capabilities

MethaneSAT will locate and measure methane emissions from oil and gas operations almost anywhere on Earth, producing quantitative data that will enable both companies and countries to identify, manage, and reduce their methane emissions, slowing the rate at which our planet is warming.

Other satellites can either identify emissions across large geographic areas or measure them at predetermined locations. MethaneSAT will do both. It will cover a 200-kilometer (124-mile) view path, passing over target regions every few days. Along with a wide field of view, the instrument will provide highly sensitive, high-resolution methane measurements.



An imaging spectrometer will separate the narrow band within the shortwave infrared spectrum where methane absorbs light, enabling MethaneSAT to detect methane concentrations as low as two parts per billion, and focus in on areas as small as 100 meters.

Once the raw information is transmitted back to Earth, an advanced new data platform will automate complex analytics, transforming a process that now takes scientists weeks or months into one that provides users with a continuous stream of actionable data in a matter of days.

The platform will calculate the rate that methane escaping into the atmosphere based on winds and other atmospheric conditions, determining the location and quantity of methane coming from individual point sources as well as cumulative emissions across larger areas.

Unique purpose

MethaneSAT LLC is a wholly-owned subsidiary of the non-profit Environmental Defense Fund (EDF), which has a long record of working successfully with both businesses and policymakers to create innovative, science-based solutions to critical environmental challenges. EDF has also been a leading force in methane research, policy and management practices.

Beginning in 2012, EDF organized an unprecedented series of 16 independent studies that produced more than 50 peer-reviewed scientific papers involving more than 150 academic and industry experts to assess methane emissions at every stage in the U.S. oil and gas supply chain. A synthesis found that the U.S. oil and gas industry was emitting at least 13 million metric tons of methane a year—nearly 60 percent more than government estimates at the time.

MethaneSAT is intended to both enable and motivate faster action to reduce these emissions. With many oil and gas companies starting to set methane reduction goals and a growing number of states and countries looking to strengthen methane policies, the need for accurate, high-resolution emissions data has never been greater.

But the data won’t be just a tool for industry and governments. The mission was also founded on the principle of transparency: making data available at no cost so stakeholders and citizens can see and compare the progress across both companies and countries.

The idea for MethaneSAT was first unveiled by EDF President Fred Krupp in an April 2018 TED Talk, as one of the inaugural group of world-changing ideas selected for seed funding by the Audacious Project, successor to the TED Prize.

In November of 2020, EDF announced that it had received a $100 million grant from the Bezos Earth Fund. The grant will support critical work that includes completion and launch of MethaneSAT.
« Last Edit: 01/18/2023 10:45 pm by zubenelgenubi »

Offline Jansen

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Re: SpaceX Falcon 9 : MethaneSat : October 2022
« Reply #1 on: 01/13/2021 04:16 pm »
https://twitter.com/sciguyspace/status/1349361110135222272

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The Environmental Defense Fund says its Earth observing MethaneSat will launch on a Falcon 9 rocket in October, 2022. The satellite and its launch will largely be paid for by a $100 million grant from the Bezos Earth Fund.

Offline Jansen

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Re: SpaceX Falcon 9 : MethaneSat : October 2022
« Reply #2 on: 01/13/2021 04:25 pm »
https://www.methanesat.org/2020/09/10/methanesat-completes-critical-design-review-moves-into-production-phase/
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MethaneSAT Completes Critical Design Review, Moves into Production Phase
Sep 10, 2020
Sensors and spacecraft exceed mission performance goals; flow of precision measurements will open up new opportunities to track and reduce potent greenhouse emissions

Contacts: Jon Coifman, (212) 616-1325, [email protected]

(SAN FRANCISCO – September 9 2020) MethaneSAT has reached an important new milestone with completion of the Critical Design Review (CDR) phase for both the mission’s remote sensing instrument and the spacecraft platform “bus” that will provide power and maneuvering, and transmit the vast stream of data from the high resolution sensors to ground stations. Completion of the CDR means that MethaneSAT is now entering the production stage with a design that exceeds anticipated capabilities.

“This is a complex, technically challenging mission driven by the profound urgency of climate change. An intensive design process up front ensures that we can move quickly, and get it right,” said Cassandra Ely, Director at MethaneSAT LLC. “The result is a more powerful measurement tool than even we thought possible. MethaneSAT is now moving from the drawing boards and onto the assembly floor.”

Unique capabilities

MethaneSAT will fill a crucial gap in current technology. Existing satellites can either identify large methane sources and quantify emissions across broad regions, or provide sensitive measurements from smaller, highly targeted locations. MethaneSAT will provide much higher sensitivity and spatial resolution than today’s global mappers, with a far wider field of view than point-source systems.

The 350 kilogram satellite will cover a 260-kilometer (162-mile) field of view. The high-resolution sensor means it can observe areas as small as 100 x 400 meters (110 x 440 yards), with the ability to accurately differences in methane levels as small as two parts per billion.

In addition to the orbital instrument, MethaneSAT is also developing a sophisticated new platform to quickly process and transform the vast stream of data sent back by the satellite, automating complex analytics that currently take scientists weeks or months, creating a steady flow of actionable, accessible information in a variety of packages and formats tailored to enable industry, regulators and the public to track emissions, and document reductions.

“The ability to generate very precise, high-resolution measurements like these on a near-weekly basis opens up a world of new opportunities to reduce the rate at which our planet is warming,” said Mark Brownstein, Senior Vice President of Energy at Environmental Defense Fund (EDF), the non-profit parent organization of MethaneSAT LLC. “A continuous stream of fresh data will help operators find and fix problems faster, at less cost. It will enable governments and empower the public to see whether methane emissions are being managed effectively. And it will be a critical tool for investors and other stakeholders concerned about the risk of climate change.”

Painstaking process

The CDR involved over 70 engineers and scientists, working virtually due to the COVID-19 situation. In addition to Ball Aerospace, the primary flight system Integrator and instrument provider, and Blue Canyon Technologies, which is supplying the platform bus, the exhaustive review included mission partners at Harvard University and the Smithsonian Astrophysical Observatory (SAO). Harvard and SAO are providing the Science Data Processing element of the mission.

The review also included more than 20 leading experts who make up MethaneSAT’s Technical Advisory Group, headed by Joe Rothenberg, former director of NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center, and the project’s Science Advisory Group, led by Dr. Dan McCleese, former chief scientist at NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory.

Offline Jansen

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Re: SpaceX Rideshare Payload : MethaneSat : October 2022
« Reply #3 on: 05/03/2021 05:24 pm »
https://www.rocketlabusa.com/about-us/updates/rocket-lab-to-develop-mission-operations-control-center-for-methanesat-climate-monitoring-satellite/
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Rocket Lab To Develop Mission Operations Control Center For MethaneSAT Climate Monitoring Satellite

Long Beach, California. April 22nd , 2021 – Rocket Lab, the global leader in launch and space systems, will play a critical role in an international climate change mission by developing a Mission Operations Control Center (MOCC) for MethaneSAT, a unique satellite mission created to foster and accelerate reductions in the emissions of methane, a potent greenhouse gas responsible for at least a quarter of today’s planetary warming.

Led by the non-profit Environmental Defense Fund, the 350 kg class MethaneSAT will locate and measure methane from the oil, gas, and agriculture industries around the globe, enabling regulators, businesses, and researchers to track and reduce emissions faster. With a highly sensitive spectrometer capable of detecting methane concentrations as low as two parts per billion, MethaneSAT will quantify and report emissions in near real-time from sources large and small, providing regular monitoring of regions accounting for more than 80% of global oil and gas production. MethaneSAT will publish data free of charge so that stakeholders and the public can compare progress by both companies and countries.

In its critical role supporting the mission, Rocket Lab will develop, manage, and operate the Mission Operations and Control Center (MOCC) for MethaneSAT in Auckland, New Zealand, as part of the New Zealand Government’s NZD$26 million commitment to the international program. Rocket Lab will deliver the critical IT and software infrastructure necessary to task the satellite on orbit including tracking, pointing and positioning, and collision avoidance. Rocket Lab will also manage the collection and dissemination of climate change data generated by MethaneSAT to the program’s international cohort of scientists and researchers. MethaneSAT’s team includes experts from some of the world’s most seasoned aerospace organizations in both the commercial and public sectors, as well as researchers from Harvard University and the Smithsonian Astrophysical Observatory who are developing MethaneSAT’s data acquisition and analytical capabilities.

Rocket Lab brings deep space heritage to the MethaneSAT project having launched 19 missions, deployed more than 100 satellites, and operated its own Photon spacecraft on orbit. Having developed two state-of-the-art Mission Control Centres in New Zealand and the United States, Rocket Lab is able to bring extensive experience to the MethaneSAT project, enabling the New Zealand Government to deliver on its commitments to the MethaneSAT programme and participate in its first internationally partnered space mission.

Rocket Lab CEO and founder, Peter Beck, says: “In the same way that Rocket Lab’s technology changed the way satellites are launched and operated, the ability to detect and measure gas leaks from space will undoubtedly change the way climate change is understood and managed. This is an internationally significant mission that can help alleviate modern society’s impact on Earth in a big way, and we’re thrilled to be able to play our part in helping to mitigate climate change through MethaneSAT.”

Rocket Lab will manage mission operations for the first 12 months before continuing in an ongoing support capacity by training New Zealand’s future space operators and scientists in mission management and satellite operations. In addition to hosting the MOCC, New Zealand’s commitment to MethaneSAT will also provide overall project support and an expanded scientific research effort using data from MethaneSAT.

The Mission Operations Control Center for MethaneSAT will be functional by mid-2022 ahead of on-orbit operations expected to begin in Q4 later that year.

Offline Comga

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Re: SpaceX Rideshare Payload : MethaneSat : October 2022
« Reply #4 on: 08/08/2022 12:24 am »
This thread has been disturbingly quiet, and now there's bad news.
It appears that MethaneSat won't make this launch.
I have heard that the launch is delayed "by a year" because the spacecraft is being delivered very late for integration with the instrument, which seems to be ready.
It is possible that MethaneSat's launch position has been transferred to an Astro-Digital smallsat for Tomorrow.io .

Berger's quote in Post #2 above about "...launch will largely be paid for by a $100 million grant from the Bezos Earth Fund." is confusing, because a dedicate Falcon launch is only $50-70M.  $100M should pay for most of entire mission.

It was my assumption that it was to be part of Transporter-6, currently listed as launching in November, which is not too far from the "October 2022" of the original announcement.  That could keep the launch costs appropriately low.
Anyone have any information on this?
What kind of wastrels would dump a perfectly good booster in the ocean after just one use?

Offline Salo

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Re: SpaceX Rideshare Payload : MethaneSat : October 2022
« Reply #5 on: 08/11/2022 09:43 am »
https://www.businessinsider.com/satellites-locate-source-of-methane-leaks-to-fight-climate-crisis-2022-7
Quote
The Environmental Defense Fund will also launch its own satellite next year. MethaneSAT will capture broader regions that account for more than 80% of the world's oil and gas production.

Offline TrevorMonty

Re: SpaceX Rideshare Payload : MethaneSat : 2023
« Reply #6 on: 08/11/2022 07:03 pm »
This thread has been disturbingly quiet, and now there's bad news.
It appears that MethaneSat won't make this launch.
I have heard that the launch is delayed "by a year" because the spacecraft is being delivered very late for integration with the instrument, which seems to be ready.
It is possible that MethaneSat's launch position has been transferred to an Astro-Digital smallsat for Tomorrow.io .

Berger's quote in Post #2 above about "...launch will largely be paid for by a $100 million grant from the Bezos Earth Fund." is confusing, because a dedicate Falcon launch is only $50-70M.  $100M should pay for most of entire mission.

It was my assumption that it was to be part of Transporter-6, currently listed as launching in November, which is not too far from the "October 2022" of the original announcement.  That could keep the launch costs appropriately low.
Anyone have any information on this?
At 350kg they could use LauncherOne.

Offline scr00chy

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Re: SpaceX Rideshare Payload : MethaneSat : October 2022
« Reply #7 on: 08/11/2022 07:19 pm »

It was my assumption that it was to be part of Transporter-6, currently listed as launching in November, which is not too far from the "October 2022" of the original announcement.  That could keep the launch costs appropriately low.
Anyone have any information on this?

It's been reported that this would be launched through the SpaceX Smallsat Rideshare program.

So I think it's just been pushed to a later Transporter mission.

Offline Comga

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Re: SpaceX Rideshare Payload : MethaneSat : 2023
« Reply #8 on: 09/11/2022 05:00 am »
This thread has been disturbingly quiet, and now there's bad news.
It appears that MethaneSat won't make this launch.
I have heard that the launch is delayed "by a year" because the spacecraft is being delivered very late for integration with the instrument, which seems to be ready.
It is possible that MethaneSat's launch position has been transferred to an Astro-Digital smallsat for Tomorrow.io .

Berger's quote in Post #2 above about "...launch will largely be paid for by a $100 million grant from the Bezos Earth Fund." is confusing, because a dedicate Falcon launch is only $50-70M.  $100M should pay for most of entire mission.

It was my assumption that it was to be part of Transporter-6, currently listed as launching in November, which is not too far from the "October 2022" of the original announcement.  That could keep the launch costs appropriately low.
Anyone have any information on this?
At 350kg they could use LauncherOne.
That's a true statement but of absolutely no relevance or help.  True =X= information.
MethaneSat WILL launch on a Falcon 9.
scroochy gave a link to verify it.  (Thank you, scroochy.)
However, his guess of a later Transporter flight agrees with my guess, but my request was for confirmation.
What kind of wastrels would dump a perfectly good booster in the ocean after just one use?

Offline scr00chy

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Re: SpaceX Rideshare Payload : MethaneSat : 2023
« Reply #9 on: 09/11/2022 01:45 pm »
This thread has been disturbingly quiet, and now there's bad news.
It appears that MethaneSat won't make this launch.
I have heard that the launch is delayed "by a year" because the spacecraft is being delivered very late for integration with the instrument, which seems to be ready.
It is possible that MethaneSat's launch position has been transferred to an Astro-Digital smallsat for Tomorrow.io .

Berger's quote in Post #2 above about "...launch will largely be paid for by a $100 million grant from the Bezos Earth Fund." is confusing, because a dedicate Falcon launch is only $50-70M.  $100M should pay for most of entire mission.

It was my assumption that it was to be part of Transporter-6, currently listed as launching in November, which is not too far from the "October 2022" of the original announcement.  That could keep the launch costs appropriately low.
Anyone have any information on this?
At 350kg they could use LauncherOne.
That's a true statement but of absolutely no relevance or help.  True =X= information.
MethaneSat WILL launch on a Falcon 9.
scroochy gave a link to verify it.  (Thank you, scroochy.)
However, his guess of a later Transporter flight agrees with my guess, but my request was for confirmation.

This article from March says the launch is planned for early 2023. So I'm guessing Transporter-7?

Offline Comga

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Re: SpaceX Rideshare Payload : MethaneSat : 2023
« Reply #10 on: 09/13/2022 10:38 pm »
This article from March says the launch is planned for early 2023. So I'm guessing Transporter-7?

Good work, but that was saying basically “a year from now” and the key roadblock, late delivery of the spacecraft, may still be there. It was when I posted on August 7.
My guess remains that launch won’t occur until about a year after spacecraft delivery.

A new source has answered these questions authoritatively. 8)
MethaneSat is to launch on Transporter 9, which is scheduled for Oct 1, 2023.
Spacecraft delivery for instrument integration is expected in September, so there are still a few weeks of schedule margin.
And there is a path to follow-on instruments. :)
« Last Edit: 09/13/2022 10:42 pm by Comga »
What kind of wastrels would dump a perfectly good booster in the ocean after just one use?

Offline jimvela

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Re: SpaceX Rideshare Payload : MethaneSat : 2023
« Reply #11 on: 09/14/2022 01:20 am »
This article from March says the launch is planned for early 2023. So I'm guessing Transporter-7?

Good work, but that was saying basically “a year from now” and the key roadblock, late delivery of the spacecraft, may still be there. It was when I posted on August 7.
My guess remains that launch won’t occur until about a year after spacecraft delivery.

A new source has answered these questions authoritatively. 8)
MethaneSat is to launch on Transporter 9, which is scheduled for Oct 1, 2023.
Spacecraft delivery for instrument integration is expected in September, so there are still a few weeks of schedule margin.
And there is a path to follow-on instruments. :)

That spacecraft bus is spectacularly late, is it actually going to arrive on time this time?
Ball has had interesting methane detection instruments that flew on aircraft as well as now on spacecraft.
It will be really interesting to see how this mission unfolds, and whether the bus delivery actually happens this time on the latest schedule.

Offline Comga

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Re: SpaceX Rideshare Payload : MethaneSat : 2023
« Reply #12 on: 10/11/2022 01:50 am »
New information directly from someone on the team:
The spacecraft for MethaneSAT is now expected to be delivered to Ball in December.
This is actually farther out than the last time, when I was told it was due in the following month.
A December delivery would eat up more than the "several weeks" of schedule margin I was told they had to the Transporter 9 launch, which is scheduled less than a year from now.
This suggests that MethaneSAT launch will slip at least to the next Transporter, number 10, if not to the one after that.

 :(
« Last Edit: 10/11/2022 03:48 am by Comga »
What kind of wastrels would dump a perfectly good booster in the ocean after just one use?

Offline jimvela

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Re: SpaceX Rideshare Payload : MethaneSat : 2023
« Reply #13 on: 10/11/2022 02:18 am »
Every time I hear an update, it generally is that the bus has slipped again.
My understanding is that Ball is making an exceptional effort to try and help their bus provider deliver that bus.
Despite that, the bus continues to slip.
What misery that must be...
I'd really like to see that instrument producing data, best wishes to the team over there.

Offline Comga

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Re: SpaceX Rideshare Payload : MethaneSat : 2023
« Reply #14 on: 12/20/2022 05:49 pm »
New information directly from someone on the team:
The spacecraft for MethaneSAT is now expected to be delivered to Ball in December.
This is actually farther out than the last time, when I was told it was due in the following month.
A December delivery would eat up more than the "several weeks" of schedule margin I was told they had to the Transporter 9 launch, which is scheduled less than a year from now.
This suggests that MethaneSAT launch will slip at least to the next Transporter, number 10, if not to the one after that.  :(
So much for that plan!
In September the spacecraft was supposed to be delivered in October.
In November the spacecraft was supposed to be delivered in December.
A week ago, it was said that it would be delivered in January.
There’s a pattern here.
There remains a considerable possibility that MethaneSat won’t be ready for Transporter 10.
« Last Edit: 12/20/2022 05:50 pm by Comga »
What kind of wastrels would dump a perfectly good booster in the ocean after just one use?

Offline scr00chy

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Re: SpaceX Rideshare Payload : MethaneSat : 2023
« Reply #15 on: 01/18/2023 10:20 pm »
Quote
We expect the satellite to be launch-ready in Q4 of this year. We're in contract with @SpaceX  for launch on a Falcon 9 rocket. Date still in flux, depending on their scheduling (it's a ride share, which means other satellites will also be aboard).

https://twitter.com/MethaneSAT/status/1615743104501391368

Sounds like they're aiming for Transporter-9.

Online gongora

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Re: SpaceX Rideshare Payload : MethaneSat : 2023
« Reply #16 on: 01/18/2023 10:40 pm »
or maybe T-10

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