M Squared, the photonics and quantum technology developer, today announces a significant new agreement with Thales Alenia Space to develop, deliver and support highly advanced laser systems spanning the visible to short-wave infrared region (SWIR). M Squared’s lasers will be used to calibrate the payload that Thales Alenia Space is developing for the 2 satellites of the CO2M mission, part of Europe’s Copernicus program, with OHB as prime contractor of the project. Importantly, CO2M will be the first to measure how much carbon dioxide (CO2) is released into the atmosphere specifically through human activity. The CO2M instrument will also monitor nitrogen dioxide (NO2) and other climate indicators in the atmosphere. M Squared’s multi-channel laser system, extending from 400nm in the blue to 2100nm in the SWIR, will be used to calibrate the high resolution spectrometer being developed by Thales Alenia Space. This advanced instrument will provide highly accurate quantitative measurements of atmospheric carbon dioxide and nitrogen dioxide emissions. Thales Alenia Space will deliver the CO2M spectrometer to OHB System. The advanced laser source from M Squared has an unprecedented operating range across the spectrum and can be rapidly tuned with high precision and accuracy, enabling short test campaigns and reliable, accurate data from CO2M spectrometer.
M Squared’s innovations are addressing global scientific and technology challenges in fields as diverse as climate change, quantum computing, healthcare and virtual reality. The CO2M project will benefit from M Squared’s expertise in developing next generation laser systems for Earth Observation satellite instruments. M Squared is already supporting a number of critical Earth Observation missions, including the CNES/UK Space Microcarb mission for CO2 monitoring, and ESA’s Sentinel 4, Sentinel 5 and Sentinel 5P missions. In particular, Sentinel 5P, launched in October 2017, is already providing critically enabling data on Earth’s atmosphere and the effects of climate change.
Dr Graeme Malcolm OBE, Founder & CEO of M Squared, said:
“M Squared makes the world's purest light - technology that has transformative, real-world, applications that can take on the climate emergency, greatly improve biomedical imaging, realise the next evolution of semiconductors, and now truly unlock the coming quantum age. We are excited to be supporting Thales Alenia Space and OHB System on the CO2M project towards understanding and tackling the effects of climate change”
About the Copernicus and the CO2M mission:
Copernicus is the core satellite Earth observation program of the European Commission and a cornerstone of the European Space Agency (ESA) activities in the field as well. It provides Earth observation data for environmental protection, climate monitoring, natural disaster assessment and other social tasks.
The CO2M mission will carry a near-infrared and shortwave-infrared spectrometer to measure atmospheric carbon dioxide produced by human activity. These measurements will reduce current uncertainties in estimates of emissions of carbon dioxide from the combustion of fossil fuel at national and regional scales. This will provide the EU with a unique and independent source of information to assess the effectiveness of policy measures, and to track their impact towards decarbonising Europe and meeting national emission reduction targets.
Data from Copernicus Sentinel-5P mission between April and September 2018
Copyright contains modified Copernicus data (2018), processed by KNMI