Unravel the story of planets within our galaxy

Explore our seven-year space science mission, Twinkle

A new class of Science Satellite

Twinkle is a seven-year space science mission that will unravel the story of planets within our galaxy. 

Collaborative international surveys will deliver visible and infrared spectroscopy of thousands of targets, enabling scientists to produce transformative research on exoplanet atmospheres, solar system objects, stars and stellar discs.

Scientists worldwide can join the mission and shape its science agenda through a simple membership programme

Participating Institutions

Cardiff University

Centro de Astrobiología

Earth-Life Science Institute, Tokyo Institute of Technology

Excellence Cluster ORIGINS

Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität München

Nanjing University

Tsing Hua University

Ohio State University

Tohoku University

University of Central Lancashire

University of Delaware

University of Toronto

University of Liege

University of Southern Queensland

Vanderbilt University

The Satellite

Twinkle is being designed in collaboration with leading satellite and instrument manufacturers Airbus and ABB. The high-heritage approach to the design and component selection will deliver a high-specification astronomy satellite within the short timeframes usually associated with commercial satellites.

The satellite will operate in a low-Earth, Sun-synchronous polar orbit, maximising opportunities for science observations along the ecliptic plane.

Primary Mirror0.45 m
Spectral Range0.5-4.5 μm
Ch0 Resolution0.5-2.4 μm (max R=70)
Ch1 Resolution2.4-4.5 μm (max R=50)
Active Detector Cooling<90K, no consumables
Pointing SolutionStar Tracker + Gyro

Extrasolar Science

Twinkle will provide high-quality infrared spectroscopic characterisation of the atmospheres of a population of exoplanets, covering a wide range of planetary types.

Solar System Science

Twinkle will study the surface composition of thousands of small bodies within our Solar System