Posted 25 April 2018 in Blog, Earth Observation, Space.
The next Sentinel satellite for Europe’s environmental monitoring Copernicus programme is ready for liftoff from the Plesetsk cosmodrome in northern Russia. Sentinel-3B will join its twin, Sentinel-3A, in orbit to systematically monitor Earth’s oceans, land, ice and atmosphere.

The Sentinel-3B satellite arrived in Russia in mid-March and today at 19:57 CEST it will be launched. Sentinel-3A measures our oceans, land, ice and atmosphere since February 2016.

The information feeds a range of practical applications, and it is used for monitoring and understanding large-scale global dynamics such as ocean surface temperature, aquatic biological productivity, ocean pollution and sea-level change. The mission also delivers unique and timely information about changing land cover, vegetation, urban heat islands, and for tracking wildfires. With the Sentinel-1 and Sentinel-2 pairs already in orbit monitoring our environment, the launch of Sentinel-3B means that three mission constellations will be complete. In addition, since October 2017, Sentinel-5P, a single-satellite mission to monitor air pollution, has been in orbit.

Follow the launch live

The European Space Agency (ESA) is offering a live broadcast of the Sentinel-3B launch. The live web stream will begin at 19:30 CEST and end at 21:40 CEST, and is divided in two parts:

  • 19:30-20:15 CEST. Last preparations at Plesetsk, liftoff, and updates from ESA’s mission control in Darmstadt, Germany
  • 21:10-21:40 CEST. Updates from mission control in Darmstadt on separation and acquisition of signal