CNES projects library

August 6, 2021


Tipping the scales at just 20 kilograms, ANGELS is the first French commercial nanosatellite. It is set to carry the first miniaturized Argos system instrument, called Argos-Neo.

ANGELS (Argos Neo on a Generic Economical and Light Satellite) is the first nanosatellite designed and developed by French industry with support from CNES. It is set to carry Argos-Neo, an instrument 10 times smaller and consuming three times less power than the generation of Argos instruments currently in orbit.

CNES and French firm Hemeria are co-funding and developing ANGELS with a resolutely NewSpace approach to governance, design, development and testing, systematically employing miniaturized commercial-off-the-shelf (COTS) components. This approach comes with a certain degree of risk, but enables big reductions in costs and lead times.

The ANGELS project got underway in March 2017 and will culminate in the launch of the miniature satellite in the autumn of 2019 from the Guiana Space Centre (CSG). Hemeria will then be ready to offer a whole range of nanosatellites in the 10-to-50-kg category for scientific and operational missions such as data collection and location from transmitters, maritime surveillance, radiofrequency spectrum surveillance and Earth observation. The ANGELS demonstrator nanosatellite will round out the fleet of Argos instruments already in orbit and will be operated by CNES. Data from the satellite will be processed by CNES subsidiary Collecte Localisation Satellites (CLS).