June 21, 2016

Key milestones

  • 2021: Scheduled launch date

  • Mid-2016: Transition to Phase C/D at NASA/CNES (beginning of design and construction).

  • 7-9 April 2016: Preliminary Design Review (PDR): this review demonstrates that the preliminary mission design meets system requirements with an acceptable risk in terms of cost and scheduling; it paves the way for transition to Phase C/D.

  • 29 September 2014: Signing of a cooperation agreement by CNES and UKSA for development of the radio-frequency unit (RFU) duplexer.

  • May 2014: Mission Design Review (MDR): this review ensures the feasibility of the architecture proposed for the mission.

  • 2 May 2014: Signing of the implementation agreement by NASA and CNES for Phases B to E.

  • February 2014: CNES decision to fly a nadir altimeter on SWOT.

  • 2014: Signing of a cooperation agreement by NASA and the Canadian Space Agency (CSA) for development of RF amplifiers to be integrated in KaRIn.

  • November 2013: Transition to Phase B (design phase).

  • October 2013: System Requirements Review (SRR): this review ensures that the functional and performance requirements are compatible with the design chosen for the mission; it green-lights transition to Phase B.

  • October 2012: Setting up  of the Science Definition Team (SDT) selected for three years.

  • 2011: Beginning of development of the airborne AirSWOT instrument .

  • October 2010: Mission Concept Review (MCR): this review demonstrates that the mission’s technical and programmatic characteristics meet the prescribed objectives.

  • September 2010: Signing of the Phase A implementation agreement by NASA and CNES listing the undertakings and responsibilities of each agency.

  • September 2009: Transition to phase A (formulation phase).

  • 19 September 2008: Programme kick-off; the pre-project phase or Phase 0 (identification of objectives and mission analysis) starts one month later.

  • 2007: Setting up  of a joint CNES/NASA science working group (SWG).

  • 2007: The Decadal Survey recommends SWOT (Surface Water and Ocean Topography) as a joint mission for continental hydrology and oceanography applications. SWOT follows on from the two proposals submitted to the NRC Decadal Survey in 2005: Water And Terrestrial Elevation Recovery (WATER) and Hydrosphere Mapper (HM).

  • 1998: The Wide Swath Ocean Altimeter (WSOA) was selected by the NASA Instrument Incubator programme. Developed from 2002 as a payload for Jason-2, it was shelved in 2004 due to budget restrictions.