We developed with LabVIEW a control system for black-bodies in an instrument for the next generation of European weather satellites.


The Meteosat series of satellites are geostationary meteorological satellites. They provide continuous and reliable meteorological observations from space to a large user community.

The third generation of these satellites should guarantee access to space-acquired meteorological data until the early 2040s.


In 2015 we were approached by RAL space after working with them before in the ALMA telescope to develop the control system for black-bodies for the MTG satellites.

This project required controlling and monitoring the temperatures and pressures in the black-bodies. The system to be developed also needed to be controlled through the EDEN and HLP protocols. And two different solutions had to be developed using different protocols and a different number of black-bodies.


With a system where the software needs to be reliable and handle any issues with all the monitored and controlled devices a modular architecture was implemented. With this architecture each device in the system is controlled individually and doesn’t affect any other devices. To make sure that the code was reliable and developed to the software specifications, the code was unit tested.

One other important functionality that had to be implemented was to control and monitor the system remotely. For this purpose, another module that can handle both the EDEN and HLP protocols was developed.

Used in this Project




Serial, TCP/IP, EDEN and HDP protocols


Temperature controllers (Eurotherm), Thermometry bridges (MicroK), Pressure controllers (Pfeiffer)


LabVIEW architecture and programming, unit testing, control and monitoring, interfacing with hardware through third party drivers, protocol communications.