Copernicus Sentinel-3 Marine Data flow to users in Africa

New marine data and products from the Copernicus Sentinel-3A satellite are being distributed simultaneously to African and European users.

Monday, 19 December 2016

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The new information on Sea Surface Height, Ocean Colour and Sea Surface Temperature,  disseminated via EUMETCast, EUMETSAT’s  flexible data dissemination system,  will ensure improved management of fishing zones and security for fishermen at sea as well as the forecast of harmful algae bloom and coastal protection.

This new service responds to the request of key marine regional centres in Africa and was coordinated by the African Union with the European Commission. It ensures the availability of vital satellite information in support of marine resources and coastal management on the whole African continent. 

Disseminating the data via EUMETCast secures the simultaneous availability of data all across the continent and ensures easy access even in remote locations with limited internet access. 

"The combination of data from Sentinel-3 and Jason-3 will go a long way to improve the development of Potential Fishing Zone charts"

The introduction of the new service was complemented with training activities for African users on how to use EUMETSAT’s Copernicus Marine data stream for operational marine surface analysis. The course in the Pretoria training centre ran from 12 – 15 December.

The new data stream will also feed the Global Monitoring for Environment and Security (GMES) and Africa Support Programme of the European Commission and the African Union Commission. 

As Georges Wiafe, Coastal and Marine Resources Management Centre at the University of Ghana, points out “The higher-resolution data delivered by Sentinel-3A will flow into enhanced ocean products to support fisheries management and provide better safety at sea for West African users.

“I am convinced the combination of data from Sentinel-3 and Jason-3 will go a long way to improve the development of Potential Fishing Zone charts and the monitoring of ocean conditions in the region."