Mission ends for Copernicus Sentinel-1B satellite

Wed, 03 Aug 2022 02:00:00 GMT
ESA Top News

On 23 December 2021, Copernicus Sentinel-1B experienced an anomaly related to the instrument...

On 23 December 2021, Copernicus Sentinel-1B experienced an anomaly related to the instrument electronics power supply provided by the satellite platform, leaving it unable to deliver radar data.

Despite all concerted efforts, ESA and the European Commission announce that it is the end of the mission for Sentinel-1B. Copernicus Sentinel-1A remains fully operational and plans are in force to launch Sentinel-1C as soon as possible.

"ESA's Director of Earth Observation Programmes, Simonetta Cheli, stated,"Unfortunately, we have to announce the end of the mission for the Copernicus Sentinel-1B satellite.

"European Commission's Acting Director for Space, Paraskevi Papantoniou, stated,"The permanent unavailability of Sentinel-1B satellite represents an important loss for the European Union's space programme and the European Commission is engaged to mitigate its impact.

"Meanwhile, Copernicus Contributing Mission data, including from European New Space companies, will continue to be used to support the most critical Copernicus Services products that are affected. The preparations for the de-orbiting of Sentinel-1B satellite are an example of our joint commitment, for the European Union and ESA, to clean and responsible space, using the EU's Space Surveillance and Tracking capabilities."

After the Sentinel-1B launch in April 2016, with the mission comprising two identical satellites orbiting 180° apart, the mission was able to image the planet with a maximum repeat frequency of six days, down to daily coverage at high latitudes.

The mission benefits numerous Copernicus services and applications, such as those that relate to Arctic sea-ice monitoring, iceberg tracking, routine sea-ice mapping, glacier-velocity monitoring, surveillance of the marine environment including oil-spill monitoring and ship detection for maritime security as well as illegal fisheries monitoring.

"ESA's Sentinel-1 Mission Manager, Pierre Potin, said,"Together with the European Commission we are making sure to bridge some of the data gaps by adjusting the Sentinel-1A observation plan and through radar data from other satellite missions that contribute to the Copernicus programme.

We are able to use data from Canada's Radarsat-2 and Radarsat Constellation Mission, Germany's TerraSAR-X, Italy's COSMO-SkyMed and Spain's PAZ to support operational sea-ice monitoring for the Copernicus Marine Environment Monitoring Service.

A summary of the description of the anomaly, of the investigations and the recovery attempts, as well as the parallel Sentinel-1 mission level actions and way forward is available on the Sentinel Online website.

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