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Earth-i: World’s First Full-Colour Video Satellite Launched

The first half of January 2018 saw a remarkable development in space technology. Earth-i, a Guildford-based company successfully launched the very first full-colour video satellite into space.

This satellite, which is a prototype, is meant to be one of a 15-piece constellation intended for commercial use called Vivid-I; the first European-owned constellation to provide both still images and video footage.

Named CARBONITE-2 by its manufacturing company, the launched satellite’s main objective is to test the reliability and validity of the technology that is anticipated to form the constellation. Specifically, the satellite will be demonstrating and proving the functionality of: data downlinks to ground stations; tasking; quality of image; and motion control systems that allow it to capture video from the surroundings. The satellite will have several positive consequences for businesses, including but not limited to: monitoring; tracking and deep analysis of activities; enabling more effective monitoring of various aspects of human activity, infrastructure and environmental change.

Having such a satellite, and eventually a full constellation, will have a huge impact on the earth-observation industry. The camera’s high definition allows it to achieve a resolution of 65-75cm, which is precise enough to see moving objects such as cars, ships, and aircrafts. Additionally, the camera equipment is more adept at monitoring specific locations because it revisits these multiple times per day using agile satellites.

The importance of the satellite launch by Earth-I is described by Chief Executive of the UK Space Agency, Dr Graham Turnock: “The launch is a significant moment for the UK and global space industries with Earth-i’s progress being tracked across the world. Earth-i is an exciting and innovative British company and is a fine example of our thriving space sector.”

Satellites and space technology is undoubtedly an area of interest for Dashboard; seeing this industry developing and growing in Britain has a great significance for us, and we would be honoured to work with companies who have expertise in the industry.