Sentinel-3 strips off

17 June 2015

Building a satellite is a complex business, most of which goes on in the confines of a cleanroom. This new animation shows the upcoming Sentinel-3 satellite stripped bare, revealing its inner glory - a view normally only granted to the engineers responsible for piecing together this extraordinary technology.

Of all the Copernicus Sentinel satellites, Sentinel-3 is arguably the most comprehensive. Carrying a suite of state-of-the-art instruments, it will systematically monitor Earth's oceans, land, ice and atmosphere to understand large-scale global dynamics and provide critical information for ocean and weather forecasting.

While it would be great to allow people to come and take a look at this technological marvel during construction, the work is carried out in cleanrooms to prevent the sensitive instruments from being contaminated. Even then, it would be difficult to show the details hidden within the satellite.

To compensate for this, the engineering drawings have been translated into a faithful animation of Sentinel-3, revealing all.

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