Miniature Radiation Monitor (MRM)

ESA's General Studies Programme Program Ref. GS 99/N86


The Miniature Radiation Monitor (MRM) is intended as a very small, light, and cheap radiation monitor-type of instrument for space missions, but also for applications in other fields including accelerator physics, industrial safety, medical sciences, and environmental protection. The definition phase and development of the MRM was accepted in the ESA General Studies Programme for the year 1999, and will last for 1.5 years. For space applications, the final target is a device that will complement the past and current ESA radiation instrument family, including the REM and the SREM as well as the CREEP package onboard the ISS.

Products and Information

The MRM shall have a minimum of instrument complexity, power consumption and weight. High detection sensitivity, long-term operation. energy/particle discrimination and wide dynamic range are also required. The instrument should provide instantaneous radiation values categorised per radiation type, and a warning signal, as well as integrated ionising dose values. A degree of proton/heavy ion and electron spectral information is also desirable, with separate outputs for proton/heavy ion and electron response.

The table below indicates some of the desired characteristics of the ultimate MRM Flight Model. The exact values are indicative, and may change depending on the detector technology finally chosen.

Weight: < 100 grams
Volume: < 30 cm3
Power consumption: < 100 mW
Time resolution: ~100 ms
Recurrent unit price: < 30 kEURO


One Work Package of the activity is dedicated to the study of non-space MRM applications. These may include, but are not limited to, accelerator physics, medical radiation treatment, nuclear industrial safety, and environmental protection.


The MRM development programme is a joint activity of TEC-EES and of the Radiation Effects and Analysis Section (TEC-QCA). The contact persons are:

P. Nieminen; ESTEC (TEC-EES); MRM project scientist
A. Mohammadzadeh; ESTEC (TEC-QCA); MRM engineering manager


General Studies Programme