The satellite available launch window was from 17 December to 5 January 2014. It was launched by a Soyuz-Fregat launcher from the Guiana Space Centre.
The satellite, which weighs two tons and was built by Astrium, was positioned for its observations at the Lagrange L2 point, at 1.5 million km from the Earth, antisunwards.
The Mission Operation Centre is at ESOC (Darmstadt)
The data received by the Cebreros station (ESA's station near Madrid) has been subjected to a first processing by ESAC (Villafranca, near Madrid) before being processed by specialized centres.
- Launch at t0 date (second half of 2013)
- Transfer to the Lagrange L2 point: t0 + 3 months
- In-flight commissioning and calibration up to t0 + 6 months
- Continuous observations during 5 years with each second:
- 80 astrometric observations (x 9 CCDs)
- 80 photometric observations
- 50 spectroscopic observations (x 3 CCDs)
- Data transmission ~ 11h per day to Cebreros, at the rate of 4 to 8 Mbps