Minimize What is CryoSat?
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Europe's first ice mission is an advanced radar altimeter specifically designed to monitor the most dynamic sections of Earth's cryosphere. It borrows synthetic aperture radar and interferometry techniques from standard imaging radar missions to sharpen its accuracy over rugged ice sheet margins and sea ice in polar waters. CryoSat-2 measures 'freeboard' - the difference in height between sea ice and adjacent water - as well as ice sheet altitude, tracking changes in ice thickness.

Minimize Latest Mission Operations News

CryoSat Baseline B data access extended

10 April 2015

CryoSat users are informed that access to previous Baseline B data has been made available via the server "baselineb.cryosat.esa.int" for a limited period of 6 months. On this server the Baseline B data will be available up to Validity 22 February 2015. Access is possible using the same accounts as for the Science Server.

CryoSat User Tool (CUT) version 3.1.0 released

09 April 2015

The latest version, 3.1.0, of the CryoSat User Tool (CUT) is now available for download.

CryoSat - New Look-Up Tables integrated in IOP and GOP ocean products

01 April 2015

New Look-up Tables (LUTs) have been updated in the CryoSat Ocean Processor (COP), which will go into operations along with the Baseline C of the CryoSat ice processors on 1 April 2015.

Minimize Latest Mission Results News
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Fast access to CryoSat's Arctic ice measurements now available

17 April 2015

ESA's ice mission has become the first satellite to provide information on Arctic sea-ice thickness in near-real time to aid maritime activities in the polar region.

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Ice venturers yield results for CryoSat

18 March 2015

Trekking to the far reaches of the Arctic for the sole purpose of collecting snow and ice measurements may seem extreme, but it is thanks to these efforts that scientists will soon have even better satellite information at their fingertips to assess changes in polar ice.

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Satellites catch Austfonna shedding ice

23 January 2015

Rapid ice loss in a remote Arctic ice cap has been detected by the Sentinel-1A and CryoSat satellites.

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CryoSat extends its reach on the Arctic

15 December 2014

CryoSat has delivered this year's map of autumn sea-ice thickness in the Arctic, revealing a small decrease in ice volume. In a new phase for ESA's ice mission, the measurements can now also be used to help vessels navigate through the north coastal waters of Alaska, for example.

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CryoSat unveils secrets of the deep

03 October 2014

ESA's ice mission has been used to create a new gravity map, exposing thousands of previously unchartered 'seamounts', ridges and deep ocean structures. This vivid new picture of the least-explored part of the ocean offers fresh clues about how continents form and breakup.

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Ice sheet highs, lows and loss

20 August 2014

Measurements from ESA's CryoSat mission have been used to map the height of the huge ice sheets that blanket Greenland and Antarctica and show how they are changing. New results reveal combined ice volume loss at an unprecedented rate of 500 cubic kilometres a year.

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Monitoring climate change from space

13 June 2014

How do measurements from satellites flying above Earth provide essential information on the effects of climate change on our planet? Scientific and political organisations considered the question in London today.

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Special delivery from CryoSat

11 June 2014

New data products from ESA's ice mission open new doors for scientists studying oceans.

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CryoSat finds sharp increase in Antarctica's ice loss

19 May 2014

Three years of observations from ESA's CryoSat satellite show that the Antarctic ice sheet is now losing 159 billion tonnes of ice each year - twice as much as when it was last surveyed.

Minimize Science
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Science

Almost 80% of the Earth's fresh water is locked up in the cryosphere, i.e. snow, ice and permafrost. The cryosphere plays an important role in moderating the global climate and as such, the consequences of receding ice cover due to global warming are far reaching and complex. Due to its high albedo, ice masses directly affect the global energy budget by reflecting about 80% of incident sunlight back out to space.