Satellite Earth

A new fleet of satellites will monitor Earth and protect it against threats.
693 km above Earth, you will find the Sentinel-1A satellite, which takes extremely detailed photos of our planet, using a 12-m-long radar antenna. At this point, the satellite has already captured melting glaciers and flooding.
The 2.3 tonne satellite was launched on 3 April 2014, and that is only the beginning of what ESA has named the most extensive observation programme ever focusing on the surface of the Earth.
Approaching 2020, a total of five Sentinel missions will be initiated. The satellites will monitor our planet and provide data and high-resolution radar images of anything from pollution, oceans, landscape changes, and flooding to earthquakes.
Image of a transect across the northern
 section of the Antarctic Peninsula
In 2016, the Sentinel-1A will be followed by a twin, the Sentinel-1B. Together, the two of them are capable of collecting data from anywhere on Earth within a period of six days. The special radar aerial of the satellites enables them to take photographs of Earth when it is cloudy or even dark.
These qualities come in handy in connection with emergencies such as flooding, when relief agencies need fast access to data. The future Sentinel satellites will all be assigned a set of unique tasks.

The Sentinel-1A has already sent the first detailed images of ice and mountains in Antarctica.

Source: Science Illustrated Australia

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