Sentinel-6 carries a radar altimeter to provide high-precision and timely observations of the topography of the global ocean.
This information is essential for the continued monitoring of changes in sea level, a key indicator of climate change. It is also essential for operational oceanography.
Mapping up to 95% of Earth's ice-free ocean every 10 days, it will offer vital information on ocean currents, wind speed and wave height for maritime safety. The data will also important for protecting and managing the increasingly busy coastal zones.
Sentinel-6 builds on heritage from the Jason series of ocean topography satellites and from ESA's CryoSat mission. Importantly, this new mission is designed to complement ocean information from Sentinel-3.
05 December 2019
In a cleanroom in Ottobrunn, Germany, the latest Copernicus Sentinel satellite is ready for final testing before it is packed up and shipped to the US for liftoff next year.
12 April 2019
Records show that, on average, global sea level rose by 3.2 mm a year between 1993 and 2018, but hidden within this average is the fact that the rate of rise has been accelerating over the last few years. Taking measurements of the height of the sea surface is essential to monitoring this worrying trend – and the Copernicus Sentinel-6 mission is on the way to being ready to do just this.
Developing a space mission is a long process that involves a lot of tests, sometimes in harsh environments. A team recently tested an airborne version of an imaging microwave radiometer to support the development of a potential satellite mission for Europe's Copernicus programme.
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