News

Sentinel-1B delivers

28 April 2016

Launched on 25 April from Europe's Spaceport in French Guiana, Sentinel-1B has produced its first images only two hours after the radar was switched on - a record time for a space radar.

The first observations were taken a little more than two days after launch, on 28 April at 05:37 GMT, after Sentinel-1B had followed a complicated routine to deploy its 12 m-long radar and two 10-m long solar wings, as well as passing a series of initial checks.

The first image, 250 km wide, captured Svalbard, the Norwegian archipelago in the Arctic Ocean, with the Austfonna glacier clearly visible.

At ESA's operations centre in Darmstadt, Germany, mission controllers thoroughly checked the satellite's control, navigation and power systems, among others, during the intense first few orbits. The team also conducted the complex unfolding of the radar wings and solar arrays.

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