As preparations for the launch of Copernicus Sentinel-6 Michael Freilich proceed, the crew on the Vandenberg Air Force Base in California has bid farewell to the satellite tv for pc as it’s sealed from view throughout the two half-shells of its Falcon 9 rocket fairing. Liftoff is now set for 21 November at 17:17 GMT (18:17 CET; 09:17 PST).
Since its arrival on the launch website on the finish of September, Sentinel-6 Michael Freilich has been completely examined, fuelled and joined to the launch adapter. Now safely tucked up contained in the rocket fairing that may shield it throughout liftoff, the subsequent steps embody roll out to the launch tower and becoming to the remainder of the rocket.
Once launched, this new mission will take the function of radar altimetry reference mission, persevering with the long-term file of measurements of sea-surface top began in 1992 by the French–US Topex Poseidon after which the Jason collection of satellite tv for pc missions.Sea-level rise is without doubt one of the greatest threats we face as a consequence of local weather change.Satellite knowledge present that international imply sea degree has risen, on common, by simply over Three mm yearly since 1993. Even extra worryingly, this fee of rise has elevated in latest years. The function of Copernicus Sentinel-6 shouldn’t be solely to proceed this important ‘gold standard’ file for local weather research, but in addition to measure sea-surface top with higher precision than earlier than.Accurately monitoring the altering top of the ocean floor over a long time is important for local weather science, for policy-making and, finally, for safeguarding the lives of these in susceptible low-lying areas.
The Sentinel-6 mission includes two an identical satellites, Sentinel-6 Michael Freilich and Sentinel-6B, launched 5 years aside to produce measurements till at the very least 2030.The satellites attain 66°N and 66°S – a particular orbit occupied by the sooner missions that provided the reference sea-surface top knowledge during the last three a long time. This orbit permits 95% of Earth’s ice-free ocean to be mapped each 10 days. Sentinel-6 builds on heritage from the Jason collection, ESA’s CryoSat satellite tv for pc and the Copernicus Sentinel-Three mission.Each Sentinel-6 satellite tv for pc carries an altimeter that works by measuring the time it takes for radar pulses to journey to Earth’s floor and again once more to the satellite tv for pc. Combined with exact satellite tv for pc location knowledge, altimetry measurements yield the peak of the ocean floor.Moreover, Sentinel-6 brings, for the primary time, artificial aperture radar into the altimetry reference mission time collection. To be certain that no bias is launched into the time collection knowledge, the radar instrument delivers simultaneous standard low-resolution mode measurements in addition to the improved efficiency of artificial aperture radar processing that yields high-resolution along-track measurements.
Copernicus Sentinel-6 builds on heritage
The satellites’ instrument package deal additionally contains a sophisticated microwave radiometer offered by NASA. Water vapour in the environment impacts the pace of the altimeter’s radar pulses – and due to this fact estimates of sea-surface top. The superior microwave radiometer accounts this water vapour to make sure that measurements are correct.As nicely as mapping the peak of the ocean floor to know long-term change, Copernicus Sentinel-6 additionally offers knowledge for sensible ‘operational’ functions. For instance, the mission measures vital wave top and wind pace, knowledge which are used for near-real time ocean forecasting that can be utilized for sustainable ocean-resource administration, coastal administration and environmental safety, the fishing business, and extra.The Copernicus Sentinel-6 mission is a real instance of worldwide cooperation. While Sentinel-6 is without doubt one of the European Union’s household of Copernicus missions, its implementation is the results of the distinctive collaboration between ESA, NASA, Eumetsat and NOAA, with contribution from the French house company CNES.
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