MSG-3 declared operational as Meteosat-10

After the successful completion of in-orbit testing, on 12 December the MSG-3 satellite was declared ready to support the Meteosat operational services and renamed Meteosat-10.

Tuesday, 18 December 2012

First Operational image from Meteosat-10

Today, the dissemination of Meteosat-10 SEVIRI data and meteorological products has started to the wider user community via EUMETCast-Europe. This is in addition to the National Meteorological Services in EUMETSAT’s Member and Cooperating States and the European Centre for Medium-Range Weather Forecasts (ECMWF), which have been receiving SEVIRI data and products since October. For EUMETCast users in Africa, a user station upgrade is being prepared which will be deployed over the coming weeks, ensuring Meteosat-10 data availability to users in Africa from January.

In the next two months, Meteosat-10 and Meteosat-9 will deliver full Earth scan image and meteorological products in parallel, with Meteosat-10 scheduled to become the prime operational satellite on 21 January after moving to 0º. Parallel dissemination will allow users to prepare themselves before Meteosat-10 takes over.

About Meteosat Second Generation

MSG is a joint programme undertaken by ESA and EUMETSAT. ESA is responsible for the development of satellites fulfilling user and system requirements defined by EUMETSAT and of the procurement of recurrent satellites on its behalf. Following the satellite separation from the launch vehicle, ESA also performs the Launch and Early Orbit Phase operations required to place the spacecraft in geostationary orbit, before handing it over to EUMETSAT for commissioning and exploitation.

EUMETSAT develops all ground systems required to deliver products and services to users and to respond to their evolving needs, procures launch services and operates the full system for the benefit of users.

Launched on 5 July, MSG-3 is the third in a series of four geostationary satellites introduced in 2002. These spin-stabilised satellites carry the primary Spinning Enhanced Visible and Infrared Imager, or SEVIRI. The prime contractor for the MSG satellites is Thales Alenia Space, with the SEVIRI instrument built by Astrium.

SEVIRI delivers enhanced weather coverage over Europe and Africa in order to improve very short range forecasts, in particular for rapidly developing thunder storms or fog. It scans Earth’s surface and atmosphere every 15 minutes in 12 different wavelengths, to track cloud development.

SEVIRI can pick out features as small as a kilometre across in the visible bands, and three kilometres in the infrared.

In addition to its weather-watching mission and collection of climate records, MSG-3 has two secondary payloads:
 

  • The Geostationary Earth Radiation Budget sensor measures both the amount of solar energy that is reflected back into space and the infrared energy radiated by the Earth system, to better understand climate processes.
  • A Search & Rescue transponder will turn the satellite into a relay for distress signals from emergency beacons.

The MSG satellites were built in Cannes, France, by a European industrial team led by Thales Alenia Space, France. More than 50 subcontractors from 13 European countries are involved.

The last of the series, MSG-4, is planned for launch in 2015.

About EUMETSAT

The European Organisation for the Exploitation of Meteorological Satellites is an intergovernmental organisation based in Darmstadt, Germany, currently with 26 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. The third Meteosat Second Generation satellite, MSG-3, was launched on 5 July 2012 and will be renamed Meteosat-10 after commissioning is complete.

Metop-A, the first European polar-orbiting meteorological satellite, was launched in October 2006 and has been delivering operational data since 15 May 2007. It will be replaced by Metop-B, which was launched on 17 September 2012.

The Jason-2 ocean altimetry satellite, launched on 20 June 2008, added monitoring of sea state, ocean currents and sea level change to the missions EUMETSAT conducts.

The data and products from EUMETSAT’s satellites are vital to weather forecasting and make a significant contribution to the monitoring of environment and the global climate.

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