July 29, 2011
Alain Ratier takes up his duties as EUMETSAT’s new Director-General
Alain Ratier, 53, takes over as Director-General of EUMETSAT, the European Organisation for the Exploitation of Meteorological Satellites, on 1 August 2011.
He succeeds Dr. Lars Prahm, who returns to the Danish Meteorological Institute as its Director-General, a post he already occupied before he became EUMETSAT’s Director-General.
M. Ratier was appointed by the EUMETSAT Council in December 2010 and comes to the organisation from Météo-France, where he has been Deputy Director-General since 2004.
The European Organisation for the Exploitation of Meteorological Satellites is an intergovernmental organisation based in Darmstadt, Germany, currently with 26 European Member States (Austria, Belgium, Croatia, Czech Republic, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Ireland, Italy, Latvia, Luxembourg, the Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Turkey and the United Kingdom) and five Cooperating States (Bulgaria, Estonia, Iceland, Lithuania, and Serbia).
EUMETSAT operates the geostationary satellites Meteosat-8 and -9 over Europe and Africa, and Meteosat-7 over the Indian Ocean.
Metop-A, the first European polar-orbiting meteorological satellite, was launched in October 2006 and has been delivering operational data since 15 May 2007.
The Jason-2 ocean altimetry satellite, launched on 20 June 2008, added ocean surface topography to the missions EUMETSAT conducts.
The data and products from EUMETSAT’s satellites make a significant contribution to weather forecasting and to the monitoring of the global climate.