Sentinel-5 A Spot



Monitoring trace gas concentrations from a polar orbit

Sentinel-5 A Spot
Sentinel-5 A Spot

Copernicus Sentinel-5 will provide operational monitoring of trace gas concentrations for atmospheric chemistry and climate applications.

Last Updated

16 February 2023

Published on

19 May 2020

The objectives of the Sentinel-5 polar-orbiting atmospheric monitoring missions are:

  • Measurements of ozone profile and total column
  • Measurement of columns of sulphur dioxide (SO2), nitrogen dioxide (NO2), water vapour, methane (CH4), carbon dioxide (CO2), carbon monoxide (CO)
  • Measurement of bromine monoxide (BrO),formaldehyde (HCHO), glyoxal (OCHCHO)
  • Measurement of volcanic plumes

Carried on the polar-orbiting Metop-SG-A satellite, the Sentinel-5 mission comprises an Ultraviolet Visible Near-infrared Shortwave (UVNS) spectrometer and data from the Infrared Atmospheric Sounding Interferometer (IASI-NG), the Visible Infrared Imager (METImage) and the Multi-viewing Multi-channel Multi-polarisation Imager (3MI).

Compared to GOME-2, the major breakthrough of Sentinel-5 will be a drastically increased spatial sampling at a sampling distance of 7km, and the extension of measurements into the near and short-wave infrared, providing information about aerosols, as well as methane and carbon monoxide in the planetary boundary layer.

UVNS characteristics

Hyper-spectral soundings with a spectral resolution from 0.065–1nm in the wavelength range from 0.27–2.4385µm, at a spatial sampling of 7km for channels above 0.3µm.

Band ID Spectral Range (nanometres) Spectral resolution Δλ (nanometres) Spectral oversampling factor SNR(1, 2)
@ Lref
UV-1 270-300 1.0 3 100 @ 270nm
UV-2 300-370 0.5 3 T: 1000 @ 320nm
O: 1000 @ 310nm
VIS 370–500 0.5 3 1500(3) @ 420nm, for λ < 430nm
1800 (T) / 2500 (O) @ 460nm for 430nm < λ < 460nm(4)
1500 @ 460nm for λ > 460nm
NIR-1 685–710
500 @ 710nm
500 @ 750nm
NIR-2 750-775 0.4(T)/0.06(O) 3 500 @755nm
SWIR-1 1590-1675 0.25 3 250(5) @ λmax-SWIR1
SWIR-3 2305-2385 0.25 3 T: 120(5) @ λmax-SWIR3
O: 100(5,6) @ λmax-SWIR3

T — Threshold requirement, O — Objective requirement, λ — spectral channel centre of any spectral channel within the band, Lref — spectral radiance for estimating the signal-to-noise-ratio

The instrument is a pushbroom imaging spectrometer, directly imaging the entrance slit onto the Earth's surface.