Jenoptik has established itself within the new global satellite system

The company’s Defense & Civil Systems division has begun the development and manufacture of electronic, mechanical and optical components for the European earth observation program, GMES – Global Monitoring for Environment and Security. The European Space Agency (ESA) has now given the green light to the project as a whole and, this week, the first tangible contracts were signed with the two principal contractors for the satellites, Thales Alenia Space and Astrium Deutschland.

The GMES joint initiative on environmental and security policy between ESA and the European Union was agreed upon back in 2000. A series of operational satellites have been planned as new systems for future GMES services. Three out of five of these satellite families, known as Sentinels, have already been defined. The Jenoptik subsidiary Jena-Optronik GmbH is a member of the core team within two of the satellite families – Sentinel-2 for optical earth monitoring and Sentinel-3 for monitoring the oceans. Jenoptik can expect this project to generate a contract volume somewhere in the two-digit million euro range up until 2010.

With its selection as part of the GMES core team for two of the five satellite families the Jena technology group successfully continues its activities in the field of earth observation instruments. In 2004, the Jenoptik subsidiary Jena-Optronik was commissioned to develop, manufacture and supply five identical multispectral cameras for the RapidEye commercial satellite project, which has been successfully completed. Its repeat appointment and involvement in what is currently one of the world’s largest satellite projects emphasizes the Jena company’s expertise as a specialist in the development and manufacture of opto-electronic instruments and components for the aerospace industry.

The GMES initiative will use already existing earth observation satellites and develop a more powerful global satellite system for continual monitoring of world climate change. The data recorded will be used to develop specific solutions for and countermeasures to environmental changes.

Jenoptik aerospace technology
Jenoptik combines laser sensor systems, optics, opto-electronics, mechanics and electronics within complex components, systems and facilities in the Defense & Civil Systems division. It focuses in the area of vehicle and aircraft equipment and optoelectronic instruments and systems for the security and space industry as well as software, metrology and control technology. With almost 1,100 employees the division generated sales of approx. 180 million euros in 2007. It maintains production sites in Wedel near Hamburg, Jena, Essen and Altenstadt. The origins of the division go back to ESW GmbH and Jena-Optronik GmbH as well as the laser and infrared sensor systems business areas of JENOPTIK Laser, Optik, Systeme GmbH.

In the Optronics business unit (Jena-Optronik GmbH), Jenoptik develops, manufactures and markets opto-electronic instruments and systems for various applications in aerospace technology, intelligence gathering und reconnaissance. Over the past years, Jenoptik has developed into one of the leading instrumentation and system providers in the international aviation and aerospace market, has established itself in the field of opto-electronic systems for military applications and also offers comprehensive services for the analysis of recorded data. The company’s key areas of expertise are satellite technology, multispectral recording systems, image data processing and observation platforms.

You can find further information at and additional information on GMES at

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Author: EARSC

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