Editor's Choice


Greenhouse gas monitoring satellites

February 2024 Editor's Choice

ABB has secured a third contract with GHGSat, the global leader in high-resolution greenhouse gas monitoring from space, to manufacture optical sensors for its C12, C13, C14 and C15 satellites set to launch into orbit in 2024.

The new satellites will join GHGSat’s expanding constellation, which detects and quantifies industrial gas leaks from space. ABB has built the payloads – the instruments carried on board the satellites – for ten of GHGSat’s emissions monitoring satellites launched into space.

Earlier this year, GHGSat reported that its existing satellites have doubled their methane emission measurement capabilities thanks to the exceptional performance of these sensors. This has allowed GHGSat to accelerate the scaling of its monitoring services, helping industries such as oil and gas, power generation, and mining to understand and reduce greenhouse gas emissions.

“The new contract is a testament to GHGSat’s confidence in ABB’s manufacturing capabilities to build complex, high-performing optical payloads for hyperspectral earth observation,” said Marc Corriveau, head of Global Operations, Business Line Analytical, ABB Measurement & Analytics. “This year, we doubled our manufacturing infrastructure dedicated to space projects so that we can better serve the booming private space sector.”

“Our collaboration, which began in 2018, has showcased ABB’s technical expertise and manufacturing capabilities,” said Stéphane Germain, CEO of GHGSat. “This experience has fortified our belief in ABB’s capacity to support GHGSat’s expansion in building proprietary

high-resolution payloads. Such partnerships are the key to achieving significant reductions in greenhouse gas emissions, and ultimately making an impact in the battle against climate change.”

ABB has been a leader in gas sensing from orbit for over two decades, starting with the development of the Canadian Space Agency SCISAT mission payload, which profiles the concentration of more than 70 different gas types down to parts per trillion from cloud top to outer space.

ABB also provided hyperspectral technologies to the Japanese GOSAT programme, which pioneered the global mapping at regional scale of sources and sinks of greenhouse gases from orbit starting with a first satellite in 2009 and an improved version in 2018.

Today, ABB builds on this legacy by manufacturing enhanced versions of GHGSat’s proprietary wide-angle Fabry-Perot (WAF-P) interferometer, which tracks the same infrared fingerprint of greenhouse gases. In this way, ABB applies its vast expertise acquired in earlier high-profile government space missions to the private sector space, with a focus on actionable low-latency satellite data for civil uses. Space is the only location that allows greenhouse gas emissions to be monitored freely across jurisdictions, enabling unbiased reporting.

For more information contact ABB South Africa, +27 10 202 5105, ofentse.dijoe@za.abb.com, www.abb.com/za


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