Skip to content

VIGISAT — The first civilian station for the direct reception and analysis of high-resolution radar satellite images

With the direct receiving station VIGISAT, the only one of its kind in France, satellite radar technology puts itself at the service of scientific research, offering worldwide and detailed observation of both maritime and land environments, systematically and in all weathers.

This radar data, which reaches CLS in real time, enables the CNES and IFREMER subsidiary to be increasingly effective in terms of environmental monito- ring, maritime safety and sustainable management of marine resources. VIGISAT is a distributor of RADARSAT-1 and 2 data. VIGISAT is also capable of receiving radar data from the ENVISAT and ERS-2 satellites.

The maritime and terrestrial services VIGISAT provides include combating pollution and illegal fishing, supporting state action at sea, assisting with the development of re- newable energy, monitoring maritime traffic, monitoring of river catchment areas, monitoring of coastlines and mapping. CLS installed a radar system to combat illegal fishing of Antarctic toothfish in the Kerguelen Islands in 2004.

This system, operated by CLS in cooperation with the Re- gional Operational Centre for Supervision and Rescue (CROSS), has put an end to this scourge. French scien- tists and fishermen now have control of these areas and are confirming that the stock is regenerating.

It is this experience and expertise that CLS has made available in Metropolitan France, namely the technical means to use a vast range of radar satellite images to monitor and protect our oceans.
Thus CLS has deployed VIGISAT, a unique station for the reception and analysis of satellite radar images, located in the Technopôle Brest-Iroise Science Park, which hosts its radar applications division.
The VIGISAT receiving station includes an operational centre for real-time analysis of radar images of terres- trial marine applications.