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MISSIONS

Explore the European Space Agency's Earth Observation satellite missions. Learn all about ESA's dedicated Earth Explorers or collaborations with otheragencies through the Third Party Missions programme.

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  • Mission - Earth Explorers

    Mission - Earth Explorers

    Aeolus

    The Aeolus mission provides global observations of wind profiles from space to improve the quality of weather forecasts, and to advance our understanding of atmospheric dynamics and climate processes.

  • Mission - Earth Explorers

    Mission - Earth Explorers

    Swarm

    Swarm is dedicated to creating a highly detailed survey of the Earth’s geomagnetic field and its temporal evolution as well as the electric field in the atmosphere using a constellation of three identical satellites.

  • Mission - Earth Watch

    Mission - Earth Watch

    PROBA-V

    The PROBA-V mission provides multispectral images to study the evolution of the vegetation cover on a daily and global basis.

  • Mission - Earth Explorers

    Mission - Earth Explorers

    CryoSat

    CryoSat determines variations in the thickness of continental ice sheets and marine ice cover. Europe's first ice mission is an advanced radar altimeter specifically designed to monitor the most dynamic sections of Earth's cryosphere.

  • Mission - Earth Explorers

    Mission - Earth Explorers

    SMOS

    The Soil Moisture and Ocean Salinity (SMOS) mission is dedicated to making global observations of soil moisture over land and salinity over oceans

  • Mission - Earth Explorers, Heritage Missions

    Mission - Earth Explorers, Heritage Missions

    GOCE

    ESA's Gravity field and Ocean Circulation Explorer (GOCE) mission mapped Earth's geoid very accurately, opening a window into Earth's interior structure as well as the currents circulating within the depths of its oceans. 

  • Mission - Third Party Missions

    Mission - Third Party Missions

    PROBA-1

    PROBA-1 is a technology demonstration satellite that later became an operational Earth observation mission.

  • Mission - Heritage Missions

    Mission - Heritage Missions

    Envisat

    Envisat was ESA's successor to ERS. Envisat carried ten instruments aboard for a wide range of Earth observing fields. The mission was operational from 2002 to 2012.

  • Mission - Heritage Missions

    Mission - Heritage Missions

    ERS

    The ERS programme was composed of two missions, ERS-1 and ERS-2, which together observed the Earth for 20 years, from 1991 to 2011.

  • Mission - Earth Explorers

    Mission - Earth Explorers

    Biomass

    The objective of the Biomass mission is to determine the global distribution of forest biomass.

  • Mission - Third Party Missions

    Mission - Third Party Missions

    WorldView-1

    WorldView-1 helped meet the growing commercial demand for multi-spectral geospatial imagery.

  • Mission - Third Party Missions

    Mission - Third Party Missions

    PAZ

    The PAZ (Spanish for “peace”) satellite, operates as a constellation alongside TerraSAR-X and TanDEM-X.

  • Mission - Third Party Missions

    Mission - Third Party Missions

    IRS-1C and IRS-1D

    The Indian Remote Sensing satellites IRS-1C and IRS-1D were identical Earth-imaging satellites operated by the Indian Space Research Organisation.

  • Mission - Third Party Missions

    Mission - Third Party Missions

    GOSAT Series

    The GOSAT series is composed of two environment-monitoring satellites developed by JAXA dedicated to the observation of greenhouse gases.

  • Mission - Third Party Missions

    Mission - Third Party Missions

    Landsat Series

    The Landsat series is the world's longest running system of satellites for moderate-resolution optical remote sensing for land, coastal areas and shallow waters.

  • Mission - Third Party Missions

    Mission - Third Party Missions

    WorldView Series

    The WorldView constellation are environment-monitoring satellites, from DigitalGlobe, have been supplying imagery since 2007.

  • Mission - Third Party Missions

    Mission - Third Party Missions

    DMC First Generation

    The Disaster Monitoring Constellation (DMC) is a constellation of microsatellites formerly coordinated by DMCii to provide frequent observations of the Earth for monitoring natural disasters.

  • Mission - Third Party Missions

    Mission - Third Party Missions

    TerraSAR-X and TanDEM-X

    The TerraSAR-X and TanDEM-X satellites feature a unique geometric accuracy that is unmatched by any other spaceborne sensor.

  • Mission - Third Party Missions

    Mission - Third Party Missions

    Landsat 4 and Landsat 5

    The Landsat 4 and 5 missions were active between 1982 and 2013, and continue the Landsat programme's goal of providing moderate-resolution optical remote sensing for land, coastal areas and shallow waters.

  • Mission - Third Party Missions

    Mission - Third Party Missions

    RADARSAT

    The RADARSAT programme consists of a pair of remote sensing satellites from the Canadian Space Agency (CSA).