BackForward Satellite Programme: UK contribution to the Disaster Monitoring Constellation 

Programme details
Programme description
  • Series of satellites, for land observation.
  • UK programme developed and operated by Surrey Satellite Technology Ltd (SSTL), Surrey, with the support of UK Space Agency (UKSA, former BNSC) as regulator.
  • The platforms are actively stabilised over 3 axes.
  • The design life time is 5 years.
  • The satellites exploit sunsynchronous orbits around 10:30, consistent with the Disaster Monitoring Constellation.
  • The replacement policy is based on launching satellites in sequence, roughly 6 months before the expected end-of-life of a satellite.  Also, redundancy provided by the large number of satellites in the DMC architecture.
  • See detailed description at
Data circulation
  • Data stored onboard and transmitted to a network of ground stations organised in the framework of the DMC arrangement.
  • Data circulating within the Disaster Monitoring Constellation consortium in free and fast fashion.  Open access granted. 
Programme lifetime 2003 - 2019
Associated satellites and instruments

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