In partnership with the European Commission and in the frame of the Global Monitoring for Environment and Security
(GMES) program, the European Space Agency (ESA) is developing the Sentinel-2 optical imaging mission devoted to
the operational monitoring of land and coastal areas.
The Sentinel-2 mission is based on a satellites constellation deployed in polar sun-synchronous orbit. While ensuring
data continuity of former SPOT and LANDSAT multi-spectral missions, Sentinel-2 will also offer a wide range of
improvements such as a global coverage, a large field of view (290km), a high revisit capability (5 days with two
satellites), a high resolution (10m, 20m and 60m) and multi-spectral imagery (13 spectral bands). In this context, the
Centre National d'Etudes Spatiales (CNES) supports ESA to define the system image products and to prototype the
relevant image processing techniques.
First, this paper presents the Sentinel-2 system and the image products that will be delivered: starting from raw
decompressed images up to accurate ortho-images in Top of Atmosphere reflectances. The stringent image quality
requirements are also described, in particular the very accurate target geo-location.
Then, the prototyped image processing techniques will be addressed. Both radiometric and geometric processing will be
described with a special focus on the automatic enhancement of the geometric physical model involving a global set of
Finally, the very promising results obtained by the prototype will be presented and discussed. The radiometric and
geometric performances will be provided as well as the associated computing time estimation on the target platform.