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Success Stories

Read articles about the successes of ESA's mission programmes and applications of the data obtained by the satellites.

  • News - Success Stories

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    25 Nov 2021

    COP26 fuels interest in satellite data

    As COP26 stimulates action to reduce global warming, the essential role of satellite data in understanding and monitoring climate change is apparent.

  • News - Success Stories

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    12 July 2022

    CRYO2ICE over Antarctica: revealing further insight on changing ice

    The CryoSat-2 satellite is currently being aligned with ICESat-2 over Antarctica, unlocking fresh possibilities in the wealth of new information being delivered by the near-synchronous orbit of the two satellites.

  • News - Success Stories

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    5 Dec 2023

    CryoSat land ice data track destabilisation of Antarctic glacier

    Even apparently stable glaciers in Antarctica are at risk of losing large quantities of ice due to warming seas. The warning comes after satellite data showed the Cadman glacier – previously stable for 50 years - retreated by 8 km between November 2018 and May 2021.

  • News - Success Stories

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    2 May 2018

    CryoSat reveals retreat of Patagonian glaciers

    ESA's CryoSat surpassed its original scope by revealing exactly how mountain glaciers are succumbing to change.

  • News - Success Stories

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    24 Nov 2023

    CryoSat safe and sound

    A fuel leak aboard the CryoSat satellite threatened to bring the mission to an end in 2025 however operators at ESOC initiated a swap to a back-up system thus saving the satellite for years to come.

  • News - Success Stories

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    8 Apr 2020

    CryoSat still cool at 10

    Today marks 10 years since a Dnepr rocket blasted off from an underground silo in the remote desert steppe of Kazakhstan

  • News - Success Stories

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    15 Oct 2021

    CryoSat's Swath Processing Technique

    For more than 30 years, satellite radar altimetry has been used to continuously monitor the state of the cryosphere and to investigate the impact of global warming on sea level rise. Owing to this, maps of ice sheet elevation and elevation change were derived.

  • News - Success Stories

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    30 Oct 2020

    CryoSat-2 Data Used to Measure Ionospheric Currents

    A new study has shown that navigation magnetometer data from the CryoSat-2 and Gravity Recovery and Climate Experiment Follow-On (GRACE-FO) satellites can be used to diagnose weak low-/mid-latitude ionospheric currents.

  • News - Success Stories

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    24 Nov 2021

    CryoTEMPO-EOLIS Products Now Available for Iceland, Svalbard, and the Canadian Arctic

    Land-ice is declining globally, raising sea levels worldwide and impacting glacial risks and access to fresh-water in high-mountain glaciers regions. Land-ice monitoring via Earth Observation methods in general, and altimetry in particular, are essential for tracking the current status of ice volume change and its evolution as climate continues to evolve and mitigating actions are being pursued.

  • News - Success Stories

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    6 Oct 2022

    Decades of satellite data reveal the risks of climate tipping points

    Decades-long time series that draw on ESA’s Earth observation archives are enabling scientists to uncover the threat of sudden and potentially irreversible changes to the icy parts of the planet.

  • News - Success Stories

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    28 Apr 2023

    ESA missions deliver new long-term perspective on sea ice decline

    A 29-year timeseries of polar sea ice thickness and volume that draws on altimetry data from a succession of ESA missions has been presented at the European Geoscience Union general assembly.

  • News - Success Stories

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    29 June 2023

    ESA missions help to reveal worldwide lake water loss trend

    Climate change, human consumption and sedimentation are depleting more than half of the world’s biggest lakes of water, according to a ground-breaking analysis that drew on three decades of satellite data.

  • News - Success Stories

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    13 May 2019

    ESA's Earth Explorers surpassing expectations

    In this video, learn how each Earth Explorer mission is contributing to Earth science, and changing the way we look at our beloved planet.

  • News - Success Stories

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    30 Apr 2020

    Mission continuity

    Long-term availability of Earth observation data from a given instrument is crucial to many data users and their research—but just how does it work?

  • News - Success Stories

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    31 Aug 2023

    New CryoSat data to boost understanding of the oceans

    A new CryoSat sea level anomaly product designed to enable ocean science and the development of operational marine applications has been released.

  • News - Success Stories

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    19 May 2022

    New one-stop-shop for ESA and NASA altimetry data

    cs2eo.org is a free, easy-to-use portal to explore, combine and download airborne and spaceborne altimetry data from CryoSat-2, ICESat-2, CryoVEx, IceBridge and CryoTEMPO-EOLIS.

  • News - Success Stories

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    21 Dec 2021

    Retrieving Snow Depth Over Sea Ice Using Dual-Frequency Altimetric Measurements

    A new study from the sea ice team of the Laboratory of Space Geophysical and Oceanographic Studies (LEGOS) in Toulouse has shown that dual-frequency SARAL and CryoSat-2 altimetric measurements can be used to retrieve consistent snow depth data over sea ice in both hemispheres.

  • News - Success Stories

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    22 Nov 2022

    Robust airborne radar instrument aids CryoSat ice data

    During the 12 years that ESA’s ice mission – CryoSat – has been monitoring Earth’s ice masses from space, simultaneous airborne measurements were made by ASIRAS.

  • News - Success Stories

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    11 Sept 2018

    Special CryoSat issue in Advances in Space Research journal

    A special issue of the Advances in Space Research journal dedicated to CryoSat is available to download.

  • News - Success Stories

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    7 Feb 2024

    Trailblazing ERS-2 mission enables climate change applications

    As ESA’s ERS-2 satellite approaches Earth’s atmosphere for reentry, it’s time to reflect on the mission’s great achievements in powering climate-related applications.