the PROBA-V instrument

The Vegetation-1 and Vegetation-2 instruments onboard the SPOT 4 and SPOT 5 satellites have been operational until 31 May 2014. These instruments have daily monitored and mapped the worldwide vegetation for more than 16 years, thus providing essential information on crop yields, droughts, desertification, changes in the type of vegetation, deforestation, etc. to a broad user community.

ESA is currently preparing the launch of the Sentinel-3 satellites, of which the first one (Sentinel-3A) is foreseen for September 29tn, 2015. The Sentinel missions are developed for the operational needs in land, ocean, and atmospheric monitoring within the European Copernicus programme. However, between the end-of-life of SPOT-VGT and the launch of the Sentinel-3 satellites, a rather large time gap of about 3 years would occur, which would imply a discontinuation of the vegetation monitoring time series.

In order to preserve this observational continuity, Belgium decided to build a small satellite mission based on the successful ESA PROBA expertise, using state-of-the-art-technology. PROBA-V (with "V" standing for Vegetation) was designed by a full Belgian consortium, fulfills all of the vegetation users specifications and is complement to the Sentinel-3 satellites to be launched after PROBA-V.

PROBA-V has a constellation of 3 cameras that daily observe the land surface and vegetation at similar spectral wavelengths (BLUE, RED, NIR, and SWIR) as SPOT-VGT, but with an improved spatial resolution (300 m and 100 m for the centre camera). These observations are processed into daily and 10-daily syntheses products,  available at 100 m, 300 m, and 1 km. The products can be downloaded from