Minimize News

SMOS brings Mediterranean salinity into focus

11 May 2017

Web Content Image

ESA's SMOS mission maps variations in soil moisture and salt in the surface waters of the open oceans. When the satellite was designed, it was not envisaged that it would be able to measure salinity in smaller seas like the Mediterranean, but SMOS has again surpassed expectations.

The satellite carries a microwave instrument to capture images of ‘brightness temperature', which correspond to microwave radiation emitted from Earth's surface and can be related to soil moisture and ocean salinity.

While this information is fulfilling the mission's core objective of improving our understanding of Earth's water cycle, SMOS has found a multitude of other uses such as tracking hurricanes, measuring thin ice floating in the polar oceans and improving crop-yield forecasts.
Read more

Minimize Top story on Copernicus

Sentinel-5P launch preparations in full swing

14 September 2017

With liftoff set for 13 October, engineers at Russia's Plesetsk launch site are steaming ahead with the task of getting Europe's next Copernicus satellite ready for its journey into orbit.
Sentinel-5P being lifted into position
The Sentinel-5P satellite has been at Plesetsk in northern Russia for almost two weeks. So far, it has been taken out of its transport container, positioned for testing and engineers have started ticking off the jobs on the long ‘to do' list.