Sentinel-3A taking final steps to launch

03 December 2015

After an eventful journey to Russia, by plane, lorry and train, the Sentinel-3A satellite is safe and sound in the Plesetsk cosmodrome in northern Russia, for lift-off next month.

This latest satellite for Europe's Copernicus environmental programme carries a suite of state-of-the-art instruments that is perhaps the most comprehensive in the Sentinel series.

The Sentinel-3 mission will be at the heart of operational oceanography. For example, it will monitor the health of our oceans and measure sea-surface height to follow ocean flow and surface waves - essential for safe marine operations.

Such information will lead to better ocean and weather forecasts. It will also monitor sea-level change and diminishing sea ice in the Arctic.

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