Faubourg de l'Hôpital 68 +41 32 889 68 69 jean-luc.josset@space-x.ch


27-Sep-2003 Launch
21-May-2004 SMART-1 is at 70’000km from the Earth
06-Oct-2004 LaserLink experiment is conducted at 130’000km from the Earth
28-Oct-2004 AMIE witnesses a Moon eclipse
12-Nov-2004 The 1st European Far Side Image of the Moon is taken by AMIE
03-Sep-2006 SMART-1 crashes deliberately on the Moon thus ending the mission

SMART stands for Small Missions for Advanced Research in Technology. SMART-1 is its first edition and the first European mission to travel to and orbit around the Moon. The main technologic goal was to reach the Moon using solar-electric propulsion. Ion had been previously used as the primary propulsion system only once by NASA’s Deep Space 1 probe. In addition, to save xenon fuel, SMART-1 orbit was defined to use celestial mechanics. By passing close by massive objects, one can take advantage of the gravity to change directions. By performing short and small acceleration at specific orbit position, the increase of speed is maximized.

a) Launch of SMART-1 27.09.03 b) 1st image at 70’000km from the Earth on the 24.05.04 c) 1st image of the Moon far side on the 12.11.04


Advanced Moon micro-Imager Experiment – AMIE

Science Goals
  • To image Lunar South Poles: permanent shadow (ice deposit) & eternal light (crater rims
  • To map of high latitudes regions (south) mainly at farside (South Pole Aitken Basin (SPA))
  • Local Spectrophotometry and physical state of the lunar surface
    (provide spectral data to distinguish between mafic and anorthosite rich material; study surface alteration processes; investigate at close range the mineralogical composition of ejecta of Aitken basin)
  • Ancient Lunar Nonmare volcanisme and early thermal history
Technical Objectives

As SMART-1 is a demonstration mission, AMIE was conceived to answer the following objectives:

  • Flight demonstration of high technology (micro-imager, μP, micro-DPU, …) for future planetary mission (BepiColombo, Exomars, …)
  • Laserlink experiment
  • On Board Autonomous Navigation (OBAN)


Instrument Specification

AMIE is an imaging system including a digital space micro-camera equipped with a teleobjective, a system control unit, an image compression unit, power control interfaces to the spacecraft, for an impressive mass of less than 1.8kg.

  • 5.3° x 5.3° FOV, producing images of 45km x 45km at 500km
  • CCD 1024 x 1024 → resolution of 45m7pixel with 10 bits/pixel
  • Powerful Image Compression Unit → high data compression rate
  • Power Supply I/F Board (PSIF)
  • System Control Unit (SCU): μP Board, buffer memory, …
  • Total Mass ~ 2kg

55’000 pictures were taken, comprising a complete surface coverage of the Moon’s poles.

The goal of this communication experiment is to test the possibility to use laser for transmission with remote probe. This system has already been tested by ESA with satellite in orbit around the Earth.In order to demonstrate its feasability, a laser beam from the optical ground station on Tenerife in Spain’s Canary Islands was to be detected by AMIE. The detector being of more or less 1cm2 and SMART-1 being at 50’000 km from Earth and moving, this was a real achievment when AMIE image showed a bright small dot.This experiment was reconducted when SMART-1 was at 130’000km with success.