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Earthcare: the satellite in search of answers to climate change

© Image generated by DALL-E AI for Presse-Citron

Propelled by a SpaceX rocket from California, the Earthcare satellite has just reached its orbit. This technological gem, weighing no less than 2.3 tonnes, was developed by the European Space Agency (ESA) and the Japanese Space Agency (JAXA). Packed with cutting-edge measuring instruments, it represents one of ESA’s most ambitious Earth observation projects. Its mission ? to study clouds and decipher their impact on our planet's climate.

Earthcare: the story of an international collaboration

Equipped with four cutting-edge instruments, Earthcare combines a European ultraviolet laser and a radar Japanese to probe clouds, detect aerosols and measure precipitation in its various forms: rain, hail and snow.

Twenty years of effort and exemplary international cooperationmade it possible to realize the project, born in 1993 in the mind of Professor Anthony Illingworth of the University of Reading. The most difficult technical challenge lay in the design of the space lidar by Airbus-France, which delayed the mission and increased its cost to around 850 million euros. If Earthcare was a success, it is because its design was based on the involvement of multiple European and Japanese actors.

First of all, its structure was built by Airbus in Germany and the imager and radiometer were was designed in partnership with the United Kingdom. The ground system, responsible for collecting the data, was set up by GMV-UK, a British subsidiary of the Spanish technology multinational GMV, specializing in aerospace and defense.

Earthcare: the satellite in search of answers to climate change

  • Earthcare satellite comes to arrive in orbit after more than 20 years of development.
  • Its mission: to study clouds and their impact on the climate.< /li>
  • Designed to operate and collect information for three years, it has enough fuel to last for another year.
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    Teilor Stone

    By Teilor Stone

    Teilor Stone has been a reporter on the news desk since 2013. Before that she wrote about young adolescence and family dynamics for Styles and was the legal affairs correspondent for the Metro desk. Before joining Thesaxon , Teilor Stone worked as a staff writer at the Village Voice and a freelancer for Newsday, The Wall Street Journal, GQ and Mirabella. To get in touch, contact me through my teilor@nizhtimes.com 1-800-268-7116