The Micro-Satellite à traînée Compensée pour l'Observation du Principe d'Equivalence (Micro-Satellite with Compensated Drag for Observing the Principle of Equivalence, MICROSCOPE) is a 300-kilogram (660 lb) class minisatellite operated by CNES to test the universality of free fall (the equivalence principle) with a precision to the order of 10−15, 100 times more precise than can be achieved on Earth. It was launched on 25 April 2016 alongside Sentinel-1B and other small satellites, and was decommissioned around 18 October 2018 after completion of its science objectives.[4]

Mission typePhysics
COSPAR ID2016-025B
SATCAT no.41457
Mission durationPlanned: 2 years
Final: 2 years, 5 months, 22 days
Spacecraft properties
ManufacturerCNES · Airbus
Launch mass330 kg (728 lb)[1]
Dimensions138 × 104 × 158 cm (54 × 41 × 62 in)[1]
Power140 watts[1]
Start of mission
Launch date25 April 2016, 21:02:13 (2016-04-25UTC21:02:13) UTC[2]
RocketSoyuz ST-A (VS-14)[3]
Launch siteGuiana Space Centre ELS[3]
Entered service2 May 2016[2]
End of mission
Deactivatedc. 18 October 2018 (2018-10-19)[4]
Orbital parameters
Reference systemGeocentric
RegimeLow Earth
Semi-major axis7,090.9 km (4,406.1 mi)
Perigee altitude711.6 km (442.2 mi)
Apogee altitude713.9 km (443.6 mi)
Period99.03 minutes
Epoch5 December 2016, 21:17:20 UTC[5]

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