BackForward Satellite Programme: Joint Altimetry Satellite Oceanography Network 

Programme details
Programme description
  • Series of three operational satellites for ocean altimetry.
  • International programme: initiated by NASA and CNES with JASON-1 as follow-on of TOPEX-Poseidon, then joined by EUMETSAT and NOAA.
  • The platforms are actively stabilised over 3 axes.
  • The design life time of the satellites is 5 years.
  • The satellites are placed in a medium-height, 66° inclination orbit, particularly stable, suitable for geodetic purposes.
  • The replacement policy is based on launching satellites in sequence, roughly 6 months before the expected end-of-life of a satellite.
  • See detailed description at
Data circulation
  • Distributed network of acquisition and control stations managed by NOAA and EUMETSAT.
  • Mission and control centre managed by CNES in Toulouse.
  • Near-real-time processing by EUMETSAT and NOAA.
Programme lifetime 2001 - 2027
Associated satellites and instruments

Note: red tag => no longer operational , green tag => operational , blue tag => planned