Thematic Group: PEPS
Scientific Leader: Jean-André Sauvaud

Description / Background

The DEMETER (Detection of ElectroMagnetic Emissions Transmitted from Earthquake Regions) micro-satellite built under the responsibility of the Centre National d’Etudes Spatiales (CNES) was launched on June 29, 2004 into a polar orbit at an altitude of 700 km and operated until December 9, 2010.

Scientific Objectives and instrumentation

Its objective was to measure from space the electrical and magnetic disturbances that earthquakes, volcanic eruptions and other tsunamis (or tidal waves) can cause. For this purpose, DEMETER embarked 5 scientific instruments – electrical and magnetic sensors, an ion analyzer, a Langmuir probe and an energetic particle detector – in order to measure the six components of the electromagnetic wave field in a wide frequency range and to determine the parameters of the plasma, the composition of the ions, the density and the temperature of the electrons, as well as the energetic electron flow.

The IDP instrument (Instrument for Particle Detection) manufactured by IRAP measured electrons of energies between 70 keV and 0.8 MeV, with an energy resolution better than 10 keV.

Involvement of IRAP

Technical involvement: Design and supply of the IDP energetic particle detector.

IDP instrument measuring head


LPC2E, France; LPP, France; LATMOS, France; Charles University of Prague, Czech Republic.