The Meteosat Third Generation Ground Segment will acquire data from all the MTG satellites, and generate, archive and distribute the products.
It will also provide the capabilities to command and control the satellites and the ground segment itself.
The ground segment consists of:
- The Telemetry, Tracking and Control (TT&C) ground stations — the TT&C interface between the Space Segment and the Mission Control Centre (Figure 1).
- The Mission Data Acquisition (MDA) ground stations — the payload data interface between the Space Segment and the Mission Control Centre.
- The Mission Operations Facility (MOF) — provides functions for the preparation, planning and operation of the system, including satellite and mission operations and flight dynamics.
- The Instrument Level 1 Data Processing facilities (IDPF-I and IDPF-S) — these extract the measurements from the sensors. They also perform a series of functions for the generation of level 1b data and the processing of level 1c data.
- Level 2 Processing Facility (L2PF), for the extraction of centrally generated products.
Telemetry, Tracking and Control Facility (TTCF)
The TTCF will monitor and control all MTG satellites using the S band. The facility will simultaneously monitor the two closely-located MTG satellites from one site with one antenna, pointing the antenna at a virtual point in between the two spacecraft.
Figure 2: Meteosat Third Generation ground segment site at Fucino, Italy
- Two remote sites (with one antenna each) in Fucino, Italy (Figure 2), and Cheia, Romania, able to simultaneously support the operations for two satellite.
- The monitoring and control sub-system (M&C), allowing full control of the unmanned sites from the EUMETSAT main control room.
- Communication links (WAN) and local area network (LAN)
- The Backup Spacecraft Control Centre (BSCC), in Fucino.
Mission Data Acquisition Facility (MDAF)
The MDAF will acquire mission data using the Ka band frequency from the MTG imaging (MTG-I) and sounding (MTG-S) satellites, and route them, once decrypted, to the EUMETSAT headquarters.
Figure 3: Meteosat Third Generation MDAF site at Lario
The MDAF includes:
- two remote sites in Lario, Italy (Figure 3), and Leuk, Switzerland;
- the processing functions (including the consolidation and decryption functions);
- the monitoring and control sub-system (M&C) allowing full control of the unmanned sites from the EUMETSAT main control room;
- the WAN and local area network (LAN);
- two system test tools: the payload interface unit and payload telemetry recorder.
Mission Operations Facility (MOF)
The mission operations facility (MOF) consists of all components necessary to command and control EUMETSAT's next generation fleet of geostationary satellites
The MOF will have the following subsystems and tools:
- The mission control subsystem (MCS) to command and control and to provide the telemetry and the synthetic view of the MTG satellites.
- The mission planning subsystem (MPS), which allows the planning and execution of all repetitive tasks via a running schedule to kick off the necessary procedures at the right time.
- The flight dynamics subsystem (FDS) for the precise determination of the location of the MTG satellites and the management of all events linked to the orbit environment.
These subsystems are largely based on software already used operationally by major satellite operators. The MCS uses a kernel baseline developed by ESA (ESOC) called SCOS.
The MPS is based on an evolution of the subsystem already used operationally at EUMETSAT for MSG.
The FDS is based on focusuite, an evolution of the flight dynamics software operationally used in EPS for our Metop-A and -B satellites.
These subsystems are supported by a set of mission operations facility tools, for example for automation, operations preparation and configuration management.
In particular, the following main tools are part of the mission operations facility:
- AUT (operational procedure editor and automation tool) based on APEX in use on MSG
- LMC (local monitoring tool) based on MCS
- OPRE (Operations Preparations Tools)
- DBTool (database tool) based on DABYS developed by ESA (ESOC)
- CMT (configuration management tool) reusing of third party products
Instrument Data Processing Facilities
The Level 1 Instrument Data Processing Facility — Imagers (IDPF-I) generates imaging/lightning datasets (level 1b and 1c) derived from the observations made by the MTG-I satellites and delivers these datasets for archiving (including the level 0 data); for further processing by L2PF, and for dissemination to end users.
The Level 1 Instrument Data Processing Facility — Sounders (IDPF-S) is equivalent to the IDPF-I but dedicated to the Sounders.
The Level 2 Processing Facility (L2PF) generates Level 2 products based on the Level 1 datasets supplied by the IDPF-I and IDPF-S facilities. The L2PF uses the Level 1 datasets, together with forecast data and other auxiliary data, to extract and format meteorological products. These are then disseminated to end-users for use in nowcasting, Numerical Weather Prediction (NWP) models, climate monitoring, and other applications.