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Second 'colour vision' satellite for Copernicus launched

07 March 2017

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The ESA-developed Sentinel-2B satellite was launched on 07 March, doubling the coverage of high-resolution optical imaging in the Sentinel-2 mission for the European Union Copernicus environmental monitoring system.

The 1.1 tonne satellite was carried into orbit on a Vega rocket from Europe's Spaceport in Kourou, French Guiana at 01:49 GMT on 7 March (02:49 CET; 22:49 local time, 6 March).

After this first 'launch and early orbit' phase, which typically lasts three days, controllers will begin checking and calibrating the instruments to commission the satellite. The mission is expected to begin operations in three to four months.

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Does loss lead to instability?

 02 August 2017

Thanks to the satellite era, we recently witnessed the birth of one of the biggest icebergs on record. While the breakup of Antarctica's Larsen C ice shelf hit the headlines around the world.
ice riftwidening gap
This dramatic event also presents scientists with a unique opportunity to learn more about ice-sheet stability.