Nasa’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory and the University of Arizona’s College of Optical Sciences have successfully conducted the first test flight of a prototype Earth camera for the Terra spacecraft.

The multiangle spectropolarimetric imager (MSPI) is a multidirectional multiwavelength, high-accuracy polarisation camera for the spacecraft.

An airborne prototype version of the instrument, the AirMSPI has been tested on one of Nasa’s high-altitude ER-2 Earth Resources aircraft during a two-hour flight from the Dryden Aircraft Operations Facility.

Terra, a next-generation satellite, will survey the impacts of aerosols and clouds on global climate change.