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Sodern's Virtual Booth


Ian Murray
+1 2064943339

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By phone +1 206 494 3339

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Auriga is an innovative, cost competitive star tracker designed specifically for the small satellite market.

Auriga is an innovative, cost competitive star tracker designed specifically for the small satellite market. Auriga features compact size, low weight, robustness, and low power consumption, and over 100 units per month are being produced. As already demonstrated with its flight heritage on Airbus One Web Satellites, Auriga is the best star tracker available in its class.

  • High volume production & quick delivery
  • Design to cost & manufacture
  • Easy to assemble
  • Up to 3 optical heads connected to their own electronic unit
  • Fast acquisition and arsec tracking
  • Long lifetime in critical environment

  • Optical head:
    66 x 56 x 94 mm (LxWxH) & 205 g
    Power consumption: 0.8 W
    Electronic Unit:
    91 x 117 x 25 mm (LxWxH) & 315 g
    Power consumption: 3.3 W


    AURIGA Centralized Processing (CP)

    Auriga CP can accommodate up to three optical heads and comes with a software library that runs on the satellite’s On Board Computer. Image pre-processing is carried out within the FPGA close-coupled with the optical head. The software is available for different processors on demand.

    The Auriga CP is flight proven as demonstrated with its continued performance on board the One Web constellation.

    AURIGA Stand Alone (SA)

    Auriga SA can accommodate up to three optical heads and includes one electronic unit hosting Sodern’s software and computer the attitude solution. Auriga SA features a plug-and-play solution with multiple head operation. Auriga SA achieved TRL-9 in December 2019 onboard CNES’ ANGELS satellite.

    Sodern has equipped the CNES satellite ANGELS with an Auriga SA.


    Hydra is a multiple-head star tracker with separate optical heads and electronic units. Enabled by its high degree of modularity, Hydra can be tailored to suit the need of every customer. Thanks to its exceptional robustness, Hydra can survive high mechanical loads and perform under very harsh conditions such as high slew rates, protons and stray-light to deliver accurate attitudes.

  • Cross strapping
  • Data fusion
  • CMOS/HAS-2 detector
  • Exceptional robustness

  • Optical head:
    166 x 160 x 283 mm (LxWxH) & 1400 g
    Power consumption: < 1 W

    Electronic Unit:
    170 x 146 x 103 mm (LxWxH) & 1 800 g
    Power consumption: < 7 W

    HYDRA Baseline

    Hydra baseline is optimized for Earth observation, telecommunications, and science missions and can accommodate up to 4 optical heads and 2 electronic units.

    They have trusted us:

    Latest generation US meteorological satellite GOES R was launched by Lockheed Martin to GEO orbit in 2016. It is equipped with 3 Hydra baselines optical heads and 2 electronic units for real time weather forecast.

    The Earth Observation satellite Pleiades Neo, with 30cm resolution will be launched in 2021 by Airbus. It is equipped with 3 Hydra baselines and 2 electronic units.

    Lucy is an interplanetary deep space probe that will explore 6 Jupiter Trojan asteroids. Lockheed Martin will build the spacecraft for NASA. The launch of Lucy is scheduled in October 2021.

    HYDRA Two Channels (TC)

    Hydra TC features 2 separate optical heads and 2 electronic units close-coupled within a single housing.

    They have trusted us:

    The high-power telecommunications satellite providing back up capacity and fleet expansion services for DirecTV was launched in May 2016 with Hydra TC star tracker


    Hydra M is a two heads star tracker. Hydra M has a low power consumption and a low mass.

    They have trusted us:

    MicroCarb, a CNES mission, is equipped with Hydra M. The spacecraft performs measurement of atmospheric spectra

    HYDRA Centralized Processing (CP)

    Hydra CP hosts the software in spacecraft’s on board computer. The star tracker enables mass and cost optimization at platform level.

    The first Earth Observation satellite KazEOsat-2 from Airbus Defence Space and its subsidiary SSTL was launched in 2014 with Hydra CP star tracker.

    The launch of the meteorological satellite JPSS 2 is scheduled in 2022. Northrop Grumman innovative system will build the spacecraft for NASA, NOAA to help to study global change.


    Horus will complete the Sodern Star Tracker portfolio with a new single-box star tracker, more performing with a lower weight and cost than our 15 years old SED Star Trackers.

    Horus will be highly competitive and incorporate significant technological breakthroughs including its lightweight composite baffle and the revolutionary Active Pixel System (APS) detector, which uses system on a chip architecture to deliver unparalleled performance.

    Horus will be available in 2021.

  • FAINSTAR (CMOS detector)

  • Optical head:
    141 x 141 x 250 mm (LxWxH) & 1 600 g
    Power consumption: 7 W


    Data transmission via laser links offers higher throughput & security than radio-frequency. A laser link terminal is made of 4 building blocks including a laser modem, a fine pointing device, a beam expanding telescope & a coarse pointing gimbal, and connects satellites to the ground (feeder links) or to other satellites within a constellation.


    [Under development]

    An optical sensor is used to track the received beams and actuate a fine steering mirror to optimize the transmission. Sodern leveraged its heritage with piezo mechanisms and optronic detection to develop this device.


    [Under development]

    Its function is to point the larger beam on the other terminal according to its coarse position. The gimbal has two axes of rotation in order to be able to reach any other satellites.

    Gimbal Datasheet

    [Under development]

    The function of the telescope is to expand the diameter of the laser. A laser beam means that the laser energy is more concentrated by the emitting terminals, and more energy is collected by the receiving terminals. The telescope is manufactured thanks to advanced mirrors fabrication technologies and innovative integration methods.

  • High data transmission
  • No interference
  • Compact design

  • Telescope Datasheet



    [Under development]

    The switch matrix is an innovative solution to manage photonic signals in a communication payload. The switch enables remote interconnection of a large number of fiber channels (up to 96 x 96) with very low insertion loss thereby providing a high degree of flexibility to the payload architecture.

  • 1550 nm
  • 1.5 dB insertion loss
  • Up to 96 x 96 ports
    Optical switch



    [Under development]

    The Approach and Rendez-vous Automated Multi-mission Integrated Sensor (ARAMIS) is a rendez-vous sensor that uses advanced algorithms for non-cooperative approach, proximity operation and docking.

  • Non-cooperative vision-based navigation with 6 degrees of freedom
  • Autonomous from long distance detection to the final approach
  • High-Performance & robustness
  • Smart design
  • ARAMIS Datasheet

    [Under development]

    Auricam is a compact, affordable camera designed to monitor spacecrafts’ surroundings. Several field of views are possible depending on customers needs.

  • CMOS camera from 1 to 4 Mpixel
  • Compact design
  • 35 degree fields of view available
  • AURICAM Datasheet

    Strip filters are designed to be assembled on detectors to form a multi-spectral detection module for Earth Observation missions. Sodern offers high radiometric and spectral performance, high flexibility (design, spectral characteristics, number of stripes), and very high precision assembly.

  • Multiple strips
  • Very tigh spectral precision


    A few examples


    JPL/NASA selected Sodern in early 2018 to supply the star tracker of the future Europa Clipper mission. Sodern thus accepted the challenge of developing a new star tracker, derived from our product Hydra, but specifically dedicated to Jupiter’s harsh environment: the most radiative in the entire solar system. The mission aims at studying Jupiter’s atmosphere and its magnetosphere; and characterizing the composition and physical properties of Europa, Ganymede and Callisto. To sustain Jupiter’s harsh environment, shielding has been added around the star tracker, radiation-resistant electrical components have been selected or developed, and a high-performance software derived from Sodern’s traditional star trackers software has been designed.


    The European Space Agency selected Soden to supply a Navigation camera (NavCam) for the JUpiter ICy moons Explorer (JUICE) mission. The NavCam serves both navigation and science purposes. Faced with Jupiter’s Moons’ hostile, radioactive environment, this set of instruments has required intensive software and hardware developments to provide the mission with reliable guidance and navigation systems.

    JUICE NavCam