GEostationary Earth Radiation Budget (GERB)
21 Sep 2009



The GEostationary Earth Radiation Budget (GERB) series of instruments monitor the reflected sunlight and thermal emissions from Earth, to study daily variations and long-term climate changes.


Artist's impression of the Meteosat Second Generation Satellite


There are four instruments in the series which have been designed and built by a European consortium led by RAL Space.

GERB 2 was launched into geo-synchronous orbit on the first of EUMETSAT's Meteosat Second Generation Satellites (MSG-1) on 28th August 2002 and GERB1 on MSG-2 on 21st December 2005. This meets with EUMETSAT's requirement to have two of the MSG satellites in orbit at any time, one providing the operational service and the other acting as a reserve. Each instrument can scan the Earth roughly every three minutes and both are designed to provide a service for more than 15 years.

RAL Space has also developed and operates a major part of the GERB ground segment, re​ceiving data from the instrument in near real-time, then processing and archiving it.

Further information is available on the ESA website.

​An in orbit anomaly occurred on the GERB instrument on Meteosat-10 27/04/2013 in which the Descan Mirror was reported to have stopped moving.  Since this time the GERB instrument has remained in SAFE mode with no science data generation.  Engineers and Scientists at EUMETSAT, the Rutherford Appleton Laboratory (RAL), Imperial College and ESA are investigating the anomaly.

Further Project Information

For more information please contact: RAL Space Enquiries