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Airbus to distribute Chinese Triplesat images
Triplesat image of Helsinki. © Airbus DS

Airbus to distribute Chinese Triplesat images

Airbus has reached agreement with Chinese operator Twenty First Century Aerospace Technology Co. Ltd. to distribute the images acquired by the TripleSat constellation.

Airbus has entered into an agreement with Twenty First Century Aerospace Technology Co. Ltd. (21AT), the Chinese commercial satellite operator, for the distribution of the images acquired by the TripleSat constellation.

The TripleSat constellation consists of three identical very high-resolution Earth observation satellites set 120° apart, travelling around the same orbit. They offer daily monitoring of any place on Earth revealing details as small as 80cm.

The satellites — launched in July 2015 — were specifically designed to map large area coverage and will, therefore, reinforce the Pléiades and SPOT satellite capacities, improving access to information in critical situations. The satellites have a nominal seven-year lifespan.

TripleSat, also known as DMC-3 or Beijing-2, was built in the UK by SSTL, which is now majority-owned by Airbus Defence and Space.

On the optical side, Airbus’ constellation already comprises the very high-resolution Pléiades 1A and 1B, the high-resolution SPOT 6 and SPOT 7 satellites as well as the DMC constellation. On the radar side, weather-independent satellites such as TerraSAR-X and TanDEM-X were recently joined by the PAZ radar satellite. The constellation is also reinforced by satellite partners such as KazEOSat.

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