PAZ can take more than 100 pictures, both day and night, in all weather conditions.
PAZ: a space innovation milestone for Spain
Spain has become the third European country that is capable of satellite observation of the surface of the Earth, as a result of the launch on 22 February of the PAZ satellite from the Vandenberg Air Force Base in California, USA. Falcon 9, a rocket designed and manufactured by the American firm SpaceX, was used to put the satellite into orbit.
PAZ is Spain’s first autonomous radar technology satellite, taking about 100 pictures of the Earth a day (maximum resolution: 1 metre). It was designed by the Spanish firm Hisdesat, with the collaboration of 18 other companies, three universities and the National Institute of Aerospace Technology (INTA) at the Spanish Ministry of Defence, and manufactured by Airbus.
Civil, military and environmental applications
PAZ will have a twofold mission. On the one hand, it will have military applications, like high-resolution maps, border control, supervision of international treaty compliance or military operation simulation.
On the other, given its Earth observation capabilities in any weather, it will play a relevant role in disaster assessment, land use, infrastructure planning and other civil or environmental applications.
PAZ has a lifespan of seven years. It is expected to cover more than 300,000 square kilometres and circle the Earth 15 times a day. Thanks to its slightly inclined quasi-polar orbit, the satellite will cover the entire Earth with an average revisit time of 24 hours. It has a thrilling and challenging future ahead, placing Spain at the forefront of space technology.