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The OCO-2 Project primary science objective is to collect the first space-based measurements of atmospheric carbon dioxide with the precision, resolution and coverage needed to characterize its sources and sinks and quantify their variability over the seasonal cycle. During its two-year mission, OCO-2 will fly in a sun-synchronous, near-polar orbit with a group of Earth-orbiting satellites with synergistic science objectives whose ascending node crosses the equator near 13:30 hours Mean Local Time (MLT). Near-global coverage of the sunlit portion of Earth is provided in this orbit over a 16-day (233-revolution) repeat cycle. OCO-2’s single instrument incorporates three high-resolution grating spectrometers, designed to measure the near-infrared absorption of reflected sunlight by carbon dioxide and molecular oxygen.

Alternate Names

  • 40059
  • OCO2

Facts in Brief

Launch Date: 2014-07-02
Launch Vehicle: Delta II 7320
Launch Site: Vandenberg AFB, United States
Mass: 407 kg

Funding Agency

  • NASA Jet Proplusion Laboratory (United States)


  • Earth Science

Additional Information

Questions and comments about this spacecraft can be directed to: Coordinated Request and User Support Office

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