Envisat still going strong after five successful years

Feb 28, 2007
Envisat still going strong after five successful years
Tropical Cyclone Gamede is visible making its way across the Indian Ocean just above the islands of Mauritius and Réunion (pictured) in this image acquired on 23 February 2007 by Envisat’s Medium Resolution Imaging Spectrometer (MERIS) instrument working in Reduced Resolution mode to deliver a spatial resolution of 1200 metres. Credits: ESA

Launched from Kourou in French Guiana on the night of 28 February 2002, ESA’s Envisat spacecraft marks its fifth year in space. Having orbited Earth more than 26 000 times, the world’s largest and most complex environmental satellite ever launched has travelled a distance of more than 1 000 000 000 kilometres, nearly the equivalent of travelling to Jupiter and back.

Generating some 280 Gigabytes of data products daily, Envisat has gathered 500 Terabytes to date. The amount of data returned by Envisat’s suite of 10 instruments is providing scientists with a global picture of our environment and is helping to fulfil the initial needs of the Global Monitoring for Environment and Security (GMES) initiative until the launch of the Sentinel satellites.

Results of ongoing research projects using data from Envisat, as well as other ESA satellites, will be presented at the 2007 Envisat Symposium in Montreux, Switzerland, from 23 to 27 April. This anniversary is particularly important because it marks the end of Envisat’s nominal lifetime, as the satellite was initially only intended to stay in orbit for five years. However, given the overall excellent standing of the satellite, the ESA Member States have agreed to fund the mission operations until 2010.

Source: ESA

Explore further: SpaceX Dragon cargo ship arrives at space station

Related Stories

China orders media giant Sina to 'improve censorship'

8 hours ago

China's government has threatened to shut down Sina, one of the country's most popular news websites unless it "improves censorship", state media reported, in a rare public glimpse into controls over the ...

Recommended for you

A blueprint for clearing the skies of space debris

Apr 17, 2015

An international team of scientists have put forward a blueprint for a purely space-based system to solve the growing problem of space debris. The proposal, published in Acta Astronautica, combines a super-wide field-of-view telesc ...

User comments : 0

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.