Sentinel-3 - Monitoring the world's oceans

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Welcome to our website for the Copernicus Sentinel-3A ocean-monitoring satellite, which was launched successfully on February 16 2016 from Plesetsk, Russia.

Sentinel-3 is the third in a series of six Sentinel missions developed to provide Earth observation data for the EU Copernicus programme.


Last Updated:  Monday, 25 April 2016


What will Sentinel-3 do?


The Sentinel-3A satellite carries a suite of instruments to monitor different aspects of the oceans such as the temperature and colour of surface waters, sea surface height and sea ice thickness. It will also monitor land temperature and colour, and aerosols.


The Sentinel-3 mission is based on a constellation of two identical satellites operating in a sun-synchronous, polar orbit at an average altitude of 815 km. Sentinel-3B will be launched in 2017.


Operating Sentinel-3A and delivering its marine mission


After the launch and early orbit phase and commissioning is completed by ESA, EUMETSAT will operate Sentinel-3, on behalf of the EU for the Copernicus Programme, delivering marine data and support services to users in the EU, EUMETSAT Member States, and beyond. 


In addition to Sentinel-3, EUMETSAT will also deliver marine data and support services to users from the Jason-3 ocean altimetry satellite, from the future Jason-CS/Sentinel-6 satellites and also from its own and third party missions. This multi-mission marine data stream will be delivered via EUMETCast or online via the Earth Observation portal.


How will Sentinel-3 data be used?


Sentinel-3 marine data will be used for ocean monitoring and forecasting,  weather forecasting (land and marine), management of marine ecosystems, monitoring of water quality and pollution, sea ice charting services and ship routing, and climate monitoring.


On land, the satellite will map land use, monitor vegetation state, measure the height of rivers and lakes, and monitor wildfires.