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Diode : an onboard orbit computation

Diode, created by Cnes in 1991, means Détermination Immédiate d'Orbite par Doris Embarqué. It is an integrated software to the Doris instrument that calculates real-time location and very precise velocity of the satellite. Embedded  on Spot 4, Diode team now all satellites since Jason-1. Since Diode was onboard the Spot 4 satellite on an experimental basis, this software fits out all satellites since Jason-1.

Every 10 seconds, Diode runs a program that:

  • acknowledges commands;
  • predicts the satellite's position using a model of its motion;
  • corrects the predicted position on the basis of Doris measurements (when the satellite is within view of a ground beacon);
  • and lastly, delivers the calculated position to the ground station.

The real-time orbit is used on the ground to produce Operational Sensor Data Records (OSDRs), which will be generated and distributed within three hours to operational oceanography centers throughout the world.

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