Wind satellite survives vacuum
07 February 2018
ESA's Aeolus satellite has been particularly tricky to build. One of the main stumbling blocks has been getting its lasers to work in a vacuum, but recent tests on the satellite show that the vacuum or temperature of space won't get in the way of Aeolus measuring Earth's winds.
Aeolus carries one of the most sophisticated instruments ever to be put into orbit: Aladin, with two powerful lasers, a large telescope and very sensitive receivers.
It shoots pulses of ultraviolet light down into the atmosphere and measures the backscattered signals from molecules and aerosols to profile the world's winds.
Top story on Copernicus
25 May 2018
In a move that could benefit around 22 million farmers, the EU's Common Agricultural Policy has entered the space age. Offering detailed and timely information on crops and farmland, the Copernicus Sentinels are now being used to simplify and modernise this longest-serving EU policy.
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