Satellites are a powerful tool in monitoring methane emissions around the world. In the last five years, many new systems have been both announced and deployed, each with different capabilities and designed for a specific purpose. With an increase in options also comes confusion as to how these systems can and should be used, especially in meeting the needs of the oil and gas industry. This paper will examine the different satellite systems available and explain what information they are best suited to provide.
The performance parameters of several current and future satellite systems will be presented and supported with recent examples when available. For example, the importance of factors like frequency of revisit, detection threshold, and spatial resolution will be discussed and contrasted with the needs of the oil and gas industry in gaining a more complete understanding of its methane emissions and enabling action to mitigate them.
Results from GHGSat's second generation of high-resolution satellites displaying measurements of methane plumes at oil and gas facilities around the world will be presented to demonstrate some of the advantages of the technology. These two satellites, GHGSat-C1 and C2 (Iris and Hugo), were launched in September 2020 and January 2021 respectively and have started delivering a tenfold improvement in performance after incorporating the lessons learned from their predecessor, GHGSat's demonstration satellite Claire.
Finally, the ability of these systems to work together and complement each other's capabilities to provide actionable insight to the oil and gas industry will be discussed.