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The SPOC (Spectral Ocean Color) is a 3U CubeSat technology demonstration mission by the University of Georgia’s (UGA) Small Satellite Research Laboratory (SSRL) to develop and operate the first moderate resolution coastal ecosystem and ocean color CubeSat with a focus on Earth science applications.

The mission will generate multispectral moderate resolution imaging products to monitor coastal wetlands status, estuarine water quality, and near-coastal ocean productivity. It is intended to advance knowledge of Earth as a system to meet the challenges of environmental change and to improve life on our planet.

The CubeSat is set to be launched from the International Space Station which resides between 400 and 450 km above the Earth’s surface. At an orbit of 400 km the resulting images from the SPOC payload will be 75 km × 90 km in size, with a 120 m spatial resolution, and spectral resolution of 2 nm.

The payload is an hyperspectral imager called Spectral Ocean Color Imager, consisting of a grating spectrometer with an 150 lines per mm grating blazed for 500 nm and a 752×480 pixel CMOS array.

It was selected in 2017 by NASA's CubeSat Launch Initiative (CSLI) to be launched as part of the ELaNa program. The name was erroneously announced by NASA as SpecOcean.

Nation: USA
Type / Application: Technology
Operator: University of Georgia, Athens
Contractors: University of Georgia, Athens (prime); Clyde Space (bus)
Equipment: Spectral Ocean Color Imager
Configuration: CubeSat (3U)
Power: Solar cells, batteries
Lifetime: 1 year
Mass: 4 kg
Orbit: 412 km × 418 km, 51.65°
Satellite COSPAR Date LS Launch Vehicle Remarks
SPOC 1998-067RR 03.10.2020 WI LC-0A Antares-230+ with Cygnus CRS-14, Bobcat 1, NEUTRON 1, Lemur-2 124, Lemur-2 125, DESCENT Mother, DESCENT Daughter, SATLLA 1

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