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New Argos-3 payload to launch on MetOp-C satellite in the night of November 6th – November 7th

Nov 7, 2018

CLS is pleased to announce that a new Argos-3 (A-DCS) payload is in orbit, as of 0h47 UTC on November 7th. This new Argos instrument, designed by the French Space Agency (CNES), is launched onboard MetOp-C, the third and final MetOp satellite of our partner, the European Organization for the Exploitation of Meteorological Satellites (EUMETSAT).

After the current in-orbit commissioning phase performed by CNES & CLS, this new Argos-3 instrument onboard MetOp-C will provide geopositioning and data collection services to nearly 20,000 active Argos PTT deployed worldwide. These miniaturized transmitters relay precious data about the world’s oceans, atmosphere and animal life from anywhere on the globe. Argos users can expect to receive data collected by MetOp-C sometime early in 2019.

Argos, environmental data collection system

This satellite is a welcome addition as the seventh Argos satellite to our constellation. It is the fifth (and final) Argos-3 instrument to be launched by the international space agencies before launch of the next generation of Argos technology, Argos-4, begins.

Seven operational satellites

The Argos constellation is composed of:

  • 2 satellites with Argos-2 instruments onboard (NOAA-K, NOAA-N)
  • 5 satellites with Argos-3 instruments onboard (SARAL, MetOp-A,B,C, NOAA-P)

Looking to the future

The next generation of Argos, Argos-4, will begin to launch at the end of 2019. In addition of the ascending compatibility and the two-way capability, the main benefits of Argos-4 technology are an increased bandwidth, an enhanced capacity and new adapted  modulations for wildlife tracking or high data rate transmissions . Argos-4 will make it possible to send ever more data even more efficiently, improving performance for existing applications as well as opening the door for a host of new ones.

Launch schedule for next Argos satellites

  • CNES will launch ANGELS (Argos NEO Generic Economic Light Satellites), the 1st Argos nanosatellite prototype in 2019
  • The Indian Space Agency (ISRO) will launch the first Argos-4 instrument on OceanSat-3 satellite by end 2019
  • US Congress and President have approved the CDARS program budget with an Argos-4 payload
  • EUMETSAT is committed to launching Argos-4 payloads onboard European Meteorological satellites until 2036
  • Kinéis, subsidiary of CLS will launch new connectivity based on a constellation of 20 dedicated nanosatellites, fully compatible with Argos, starting end 2021

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