Europe launches third generation Meteosat satellite that will improve weather forecasting

The first of six Meteosat third generation satellites (MTG-I1) was launched yesterday on an ESA Ariane 5 rocket from the European launch pad in Kourou in French Guiana. Through this space technology, Europe intends to “revolutionize” weather forecasts with two innovative instruments: An imager and a lightning detector.

The development of the satellites reflects a close relationship between the European Space Agency and the European Organization for the Exploitation of Meteorological Satellites (EUMETSAT). Thanks to them, they hope to continue this cooperation high resolution weather monitoring over the course of two decades.

“This satellite will allow us to significantly improve the prediction of extreme weather events in Europe and Africa,” said Eva Blasquez Diaz, Head of Engineering at Thales Alenia Space in Spain, for Agencia EFE. “Thanks to the data that it will provide us, we will be able to Predict violent storms hours instead of minutes in advanceAs is the case now, which is the key for civil protection to issue an alert”.

Ariane 5 launches were also used for launching Two communications satellites with services to North America, Galaxy 35 and Galaxy 36, both made by Maxar for Intelsat. These were launched thirty minutes after takeoff, and MTG-I1 came out about four minutes later.

MTG-I1 Satellite

All MTG models are characterized by the fact that they are in perfect condition orbiting the Earth about 36,000 kilometers away and has a nominal useful life of 8.5 years. Its technology has been developed by the company Thales Alenia Space, which is also the manufacturer of Ariane and OHB.

In the specific case of the MTG-I1, it is distinguished by its ability to collect data so that aircraft can avoid stormearly warning of Floods and accurate monitoring fire and fog,

The satellite will make more accurate and advance predictions of weather events.
The satellite will make more accurate and advance predictions of weather events.

Artist's rendering of a solar powered satellite.

MTG-I1 has a new generation image generating instrument (Flexible Combined Imager), which is capable of making more reliable weather forecasts. According to ESA, this tool captures A complete picture of Earth in 16 spectral bands in just 10 minutesWhile the previous generation did it in 15 minutes, the first one did it in 30 minutes.

This technology would allow continuous monitoring of more than 80% of the world’s land in search of lightning discharges. Blasquez explains that this will help him better understand the creation of lightning “Alert the population in advance of the danger.”

In addition to the satellite launched yesterday, ESA and Eumetsat have signed an agreement to launch other three imaging satellites (MTG-I) and 2023 year Two satellites with atmospheric probes (MTG-S), between 2024 and 2025.

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