Jason-3 is a follow-on altimetric mission to the very successful TOPEX/Poseidon mission, Jason-1 and Ocean Surface Topography Mission (OSTM)/Jason-2. It is a joint mission between NASA and CNES (French space agency). It launched January 17, 2016 and began data collection on February 12, 2016. Jason-3 is capable of measuring significant wave height, sigma naught (sigma0), dry and wet troposphere and ionosphere, which can be used to calculate sea surface height, sea surface height anomalies, and total electron content.

Jason-3 has a repeat period of approximately 10 days with 254 passes per cycle.