Before Europe’s first Meteosat Third Generation Imager leaves the south of France by the end of the month aboard a ship bound for French Guiana, this remarkable new weather satellite has been taking center stage at Thales Alenia Space’s facilities in Cannes.
The satellite is in its very last stages to be checked and readied for shipment to Europe’s Spaceport in Kourou, French Guiana.
The ship, carrying the Meteosat Third Generation Imager-1 (MTG-I1) satellite, will set sail from Fos-sur-Mer near Marseille on 28 September. Once safely in Kourou, final preparations for lift off will need around seven weeks.
Before its three-week voyage over the Atlantic Ocean, MTG-I1 has been on display in the cleanroom at Thales Alenia Space, the prime contractor for the mission.
ESA’s Meteosat Program Manager, Paul Blythe, says that “it’s fabulous to start to see the first in the household of Meteosat Third Generation satellites almost prepared to ship which is because of the many individuals who have been working so difficult to reach this aspect.”
From geostationary orbit, this new satellite, which boasts two new highly-sensitive instrumentsa Flexible Combined Imager and a Lightning Imageris set to take weather forecasting to another level.
Herv Roquet, Head of Research and Development at Mto-France, noted they “are really worked up about the MTG mission. It’ll allow us to have a major step of progress in improving the prediction of severe weather events. For instance, using MTG data we are in a position to predict storms a long time ahead, that is key to issuing warnings for civil safety.”
The entire MTG system will span a lot more than 20 years and therefore comprises six satellites, four MTG-I and two sounding satellites, MTG-S.
The entire mission will comprise two MTG-I satellites and something MTG-S satellites employed in tandem. The rest of the satellites will eventually replace those in the initial set.
Completely operations, among the MTG-I satellites scans the entire Earth disk, including Europe and Africa, every 10 minutes, as the other provides geographic area coverage, for instance covering only Europe but with a faster repeat cycle. The single MTG-S satellite may also provide local-area coverage over selected elements of Earth, with a repeat cycle of typically 5 minutes.
As climate change results in more frequent and much more severe weather events, accurate and timely weather forecasting and nowcasting is more important than ever before.
The brand new generation of weather satellites will offer you a substantial enhancement of the existing imager capabilities supplied by the Meteosat Second Generation, a real-time lightning imaging and an all-new infrared sounding capability for early detection of severe storms.
The entire MTG configuration is likely to produce at the very least 50 times more data compared to the current geostationary Meteosat Second Generation satellites and deliver these data faster. Moreover, these data will undoubtedly be higher resolution that those on the market.
MTG-I’s Flexible Combined Imager, for instance, has more spectral channels and images in higher resolution in comparison to Meteosat Second Generation’s Spinning Enhanced Visible and Infrared instrument.
MTG-I’s Lightning Imager supplies a new capability for European meteorological satellites. It’ll continuously monitor a lot more than 80% of the planet earth disk for lightning discharges, occurring either between clouds or from cloud and ground. Its detectors are so sensitive that’ll be in a position to detect relatively weak lightning, even yet in full daylight.
Carlo Simoncelli, MTG Lightning Imager Program Manager at Leonardo Space, explained that “the recipe for the lightning imager is basically predicated on ‘good eyes’ because we are in need of excellent optics to detect even really small lightning signals and ‘good brains’ because we are in need of something approaching artificial intelligence that adapts how it detects lightning based on different scenarios.”
“The lightning imager will be able to detect ‘blink of the eye’ lightning signals that last less than 6 millisecondsand from the distance that compatible watching your preferred program 3 kilometers from your tv.”
With shipment to the launch site only a few weeks away, MTG-I1 will be carefully packed away safely in its transport container.
Pierre Armand, MTG Program Manager at Thales Alenia Space, commented that “as prime contractor, Thales Alenia Space has led 100 companies and involved a lot more than 200 contracts in the build of MTG-I1. Needless to say we’d to adapt our method of working due to the COVID pandemic, that was challenging. I’m incredibly proud that everyone worked so difficult in these difficult times to access where we have been today and we have now start to see the satellite almost prepared to be shipped off to the launch site.”
“There’s still work to accomplish in Kourou but we have been certainly ready because of this last step and wanting to view it liftoff to begin with its task in orbit.”
The MTG mission is really a cooperation between ESA and Eumetsat. ESA accounts for this is and implementation of the MTG satellites and procurement of recurrent hardware, while Eumetsat manages operating the spacecraft throughout its lifetime and delivering the info to the users.
Alexander Schmid, MTG Program Manager at Eumetsat, said they “are worked up about the shipment of MTG-I1 and the launch, and for Eumetsat to dominate operations, ensure that you commission it on the next year and disseminate the info for users.”
“We’ve been working with an individual community for quite some time to greatly help prepare them for the brand new MTG data. It has involved running special simulation campaigns and providing them with test data in order that their systems are readyall to boost weather forecasts for the advantage of the general public.”
Citation: Preparing the MTG-I1 weather satellite for launch (2022, September 9) retrieved 9 September 2022 from https://phys.org/news/2022-09-mtg-i1-weather-satellite.html
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