With the launch of the Copernicus Sentinel-3B set for 25 April, the first team has arrived at Russia’s Plesetsk launch site to prepare for the arrival of the satellite.
Advanced Sentinel-3B team in Russia. (ESA)
Sentinel-3B has spent the last year at Thales Alenia Space’s premises in Cannes, France, being assembled and tested. And now, it is time for it to be shipped to Russia and prepared for liftoff.
Its twin, Sentinel-3A, has been in orbit since February 2016, systematically measuring our oceans, land, ice and atmosphere. The information feeds a range of practical applications and is used for monitoring and understanding large-scale global dynamics.
Setting up the coffee machine – very important. (ESA)
The pairing of identical satellites provides the best coverage and data delivery for Europe’s Copernicus programme – the largest environmental monitoring programme in the world.
Kettle and fridges – all needed to survive working in Plesetsk for weeks. (ESA)
The Sentinel-3B satellite is scheduled to fly from Nice airport in France this evening bound for Arkhangelsk in Russia. However, the weather forecast for Arkhangelsk is not great at the moment – snow and below zero degrees. The Antonov aircraft that carries the satellite is heavy and ...