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Space mission development

Despite decades of research at BIRA-IASB, Earth’s atmosphere has not revealed all of its secrets yet. New space missions are being developed to further investigate the composition of the Earth’s atmosphere, like ESA’s:

  • PICASSO CubeSat
  • ALTIUS missions

Both initiated by BIRA-IASB.

Scientists’ insatiable curiosity makes us dive deeper into our solar system. After our latest flagships (ROSINA on Rosetta, SOIR on Venus Express, NOMAD on ExoMars), our engineers are working on the next generation instruments to be launched towards Venus and even Jupiter.

Jurgen Vanhamel completed his PhD in a collaboration between BIRA-IASB and KU Leuven, and was partially based on the ALTIUS-project.
Picosatellite PICASSO, aimed at Earth observation and space science, the first CubeSat mission, was successfully integrated into its launch dispenser.
The ‘Comet Interceptor’ has been selected as ESA’s new fast-class mission in its Cosmic Vision Programme. Comprising three spacecraft, it will be the first to visit a truly pristine comet.
Two years after its launch, ExoMars Trace Gas Orbiter (TGO) settles in its final orbit around Mars. The satellite carries the instrument NOMAD of the Royal Belgian Institute for Space Aeronomy (BIRA-IASB) on board.
Precise measurement of the solar spectrum outside the atmosphere and its variability.
Prestigious journal Nature publishes two papers describing the first results of the Belgian NOMAD instrument on board ExoMars Trace Gas Orbiter.