Space Instrumentation

The space instrumentation group is an active contributor to several instrument projects including the Atmosphere-Space Interactions Monitor (ASIM), Fly’s Eye GLM Simulator (FEGS), Solar wind Magnetosphere Ionosphere Link Explorer (SMILE) and the Distribution of Energetic Electron and Proton (DEEP).


ASIM will measure optical (Transient Luminous Events: TLEs and lightning) and X -and gam­ma-ray emissions (Terrestrial Gamma-ray Flashes: TGFs).

The group’s responsibility has been to develop and test the detector and readout electronics for MXGS (Modular X-ray and Gamma Sensor), which consists of two X- and Gamma-ray detectors.

MXGS is now fully integrated on the CEPA platform together with all other subsystems of ASIM, which is scheduled for launch in April 2018.

ASIM is a European Space Agency (ESA) mission to the International Space Station.



ALOFT is a project of the University of Alabama in Huntsville with a main mission to calibrate the Global Lightning Monitor which is flying on a geostationary satellite. ALOFT will fly on NASA’s ER-2 aircraft to perform a series of flights over thunderclouds at an altitude of 20-22 km. We have been invited to have a gamma-ray detector on ALOFT.

ALOFT is funded in part by an ERC Advanced Grant.



The SMILE mission is a joint mission between ESA and the Chinese Academy of Science and is led by UK. The main instrument is the Soft X-ray Imager (SXI), which will be able, for the first time ever, to remotely detect the entry of plasma from the Sun into the Earth’s magnetosphere. Our group will be producing several components for this instrument.


Earlier Instrument Projects

Information on earlier projects can be found under the Research menu on this page.