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Latest Soil Moisture and Ocean Salinity satellite Stories

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2009-11-19 09:30:00

The MIRAS instrument on ESA's SMOS satellite, launched earlier this month, has been switched on and is operating normally. MIRAS will map soil moisture and ocean salinity to improve our understanding of the role these two key variables play in regulating Earth's water cycle. "Following the switch-on, MIRAS is working beautifully well with all key subsystems, including all of the receivers, the optical fibers and the correlator unit, in perfect functioning condition," said ESA's Manuel...

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2009-11-11 10:06:08

Into its second week in orbit, Proba-2's spacecraft platform has proven to be in excellent health. This leaves the way clear for commissioning the many new technology payloads aboard the mini-satellite, among the smallest ever flown by ESA. As ESA's full-sized Soil Moisture and Ocean Salinity (SMOS) mission soared skyward by Rockot launcher on 2 November, it had a smaller companion. Piggybacking along was Proba-2, which occupies less than a cubic meter in volume with only one fifth of SMOS's...

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2009-11-03 14:10:00

Following the launch of ESA's SMOS satellite on 2 November, the French space agency CNES, which is responsible for operating the satellite, has confirmed that the instrument's three antenna arms have deployed as planned, and that the instrument is in good health. During launch and the first few orbits around Earth, the Soil Moisture and Ocean Salinity (SMOS) instrument's antenna arms remained safely folded up. Today, these three arms folded-out and now form a large three-pointed star shape....

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2009-11-02 11:15:00

The European Space Agency launched two new satellites on Monday in an effort to gather more data on global climate change. The ESA on Monday launched the second satellite in its Earth Explorer series, known as the Soil Moisture and Ocean Salinity (SMOS) mission. Additionally, ESA launched the Proba-2 satellite along with SMOS in order to demonstrate technology for ESA's future space probes. Both satellites were lifted into space from the Plesetsk Cosmodrome in Russia aboard a Rockot launch...

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2009-10-28 07:45:36

In readiness for launch on November 2, ESA's SMOS and Proba-2 satellites "“ encapsulated in the launcher fairing "“ have been transported from the cleanroom and installed in the launch tower at the Plesetsk Cosmodrome in northern Russia. This morning, the "Ëœupper composite' of satellites joined to the Breeze-KM upper stage and sealed within the fairing was transported by rail from the cleanroom in the integration facilities to the launch pad. It took around four hours...

fef62e4a7bb9b8fc1d91e1a752347f221
2009-10-21 09:45:00

As preparations for the launch of SMOS and Proba-2 continue on schedule, the engineers and technicians at the Russian launch site say goodbye as both satellites are encapsulated within the half-shells of the Rockot fairing. Volker Liebig, ESA's Director of Earth Observation Programs, said, "Today, with the encapsulation of the SMOS satellite in the launcher fairing, we have made an important step towards the launch of this key environmental mission, which will investigate two parameters...

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2009-10-06 07:35:00

As the first snow of the winter arrives in Plesetsk, the team has reached a significant milestone in the launch campaign "“ the launch authorities have given the green light to fuel the satellite. This hazardous activity is being carried out today by members of the Thales Alenia Space team. Yesterday, preparations for fuelling were in full swing with the satellite being inspected and the equipment being set up for the procedure. In addition, the documentation needed to do the fuelling...

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2009-10-05 11:10:00

While the SMOS and Proba-2 launch campaigns are progressing well in Plesetsk, Russia, operations teams in France and Spain have also been getting ready for launch on November 2. Over the last couple of weeks, the operations teams have taken part in the final dress rehearsal for the Launch and Early Orbit Phase (LEOP) of the mission. This simulation campaign complements two earlier dry-runs that were carried out in January and March and which simulated normal operating conditions. This dress...

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2009-10-02 19:35:00

As part of ESA's Earth Observation Program and its continuing endeavor to address critical Earth science issues, the Agency has released an opportunity for scientists to submit proposals for the eighth Earth Explorer mission. By focusing on science and research, the Earth Explorer series of missions is being flown to improve our understanding of how the Earth system works and how human activity affects natural Earth processes. Earth Explorer missions also test cutting-edge technology for...

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2009-09-19 08:00:13

After leaving Thales Alenia Space in the south of France on September 15, ESA's SMOS Earth Explorer has arrived safely at the Plesetsk Cosmodrome in northern Russia, where it will be prepared for launch on November 2. The Antonov aircraft carrying the Soil Moisture and Ocean Salinity (SMOS) satellite, along with seven containers of support equipment, arrived at Arkhangelsk early in the morning of September 16. Once unloaded from the aircraft, the precious cargo was transported by truck to the...


Word of the Day
toccata
  • In music, a work for a keyboard-instrument, like the pianoforte or organ, originally intended to utilize and display varieties of touch: but the term has been extended so as to include many irregular works, similar to the prelude, the fantasia, and the improvisation.
This word is Italian in origin, coming from the feminine past participle of 'toccare,' to touch.
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