On 23 June, a Vega launcher will loft the first of ESA's dual Sentinel-2 satellites into orbit from Europe's Spaceport in Kourou. For the mission control team, liftoff will mark the end of many months of careful preparations and the start of the mission's first critical phase.
At 1:51:58 GMT (3:51:58 CEST) next Tuesday morning, ESA's Sentinel-2A satellite is set to launch from Kourou on a 30-m tall Vega rocket for a raucous ride into space on a mission dedicated to Europe's Copernicus environmental monitoring programme.
Once operational, this new satellite will provide information for agriculture and forestry and for helping manage food security. It will also provide timely information on pollution in lakes and coastal waters. Images of floods, volcanic eruptions and landslides will contribute to rapid disaster mapping and humanitarian relief efforts.