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EUMETSAT

EUMETSAT Council prepares the approval of the EPS-SG programme and extends the Jason-2 ocean altimetry programme

The 79th meeting of the EUMETSAT Council took place in Darmstadt, Germany, on 26 November

(PresseBox) (Darmstadt, )
The Council reviewed the first elements of the EPS-SG programme proposal, which is the follow-up programme to the first generation EUMETSAT Polar System. EPS-SG will secure the continuity and enhancement of observations from low-earth orbit to support operational weather forecasting up to 10 days ahead and provide additional operational services in support of environment and climate monitoring. In this context, Council also approved the contract for a new office building on the existing site in Darmstadt, which is necessary to accommodate the additional teams needed to service the programme.

The approval of the EPS-SG programme is planned at the end of 2014 based on a full programme proposal to be submitted to the Council in June 2014.

The Council also gave the green light to extend the optional Jason-2 programme, also involving the French Space Agency (CNES) and the US National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), for a further period of operations from mid-2015 to the end of 2017. Jason-2 provides high-precision measurements of sea surface topography for operational oceanography and monitoring of mean sea level. The programme extension also includes continuing EUMETSAT's support for the SARAL (Satellite with ARgos and ALtika) ocean altimetry mission over the same time period.

SARAL is a joint mission of the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) and CNES, to which EUMETSAT contributes by hosting and operating the European near real-time processing centre. Ocean altimetry data from SARAL complements Jason-2 data as SARAL follows a different orbit and the combination of data from two altimeter missions improves the accuracy of sea surface height measurements.

EUMETSAT's Council also approved the continuation of the highly successful cooperation agreement with ISRO, which includes the bilateral exchange of data and products from both organisations' meteorological and ocean-monitoring satellites.

EUMETSAT

The European Organisation for the Exploitation of Meteorological Satellites is an intergovernmental organisation based in Darmstadt, Germany, currently with 27 Member States (Austria, Belgium, Croatia, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, 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 four Cooperating States (Bulgaria, Iceland, Lithuania, and Serbia).

EUMETSAT operates the geostationary satellites Meteosat-8, -9 and -10 over Europe and Africa, and Meteosat-7 over the Indian Ocean.

EUMETSAT also operates two Metop polar-orbiting satellites as part of the Initial Joint Polar System (IJPS) shared with the US National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA). The Metop-B polar-orbiting meteorological satellite, launched on 17 September 2012, became prime operational satellite on 24 April 2013. It replaced Metop-A, the first European polar-orbiting meteorological satellite, which was launched in October 2006. Metop-A will continue operations as long as its available capacities bring benefits to users.

The Jason-2 ocean altimetry satellite, launched on 20 June 2008 and exploited jointly with NOAA, NASA and CNES, added monitoring of sea state, ocean currents and sea level change to the EUMETSAT product portfolio.

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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The publisher indicated in each case is solely responsible for the press releases above, the event or job offer displayed, and the image and sound material used (see company info when clicking on image/message title or company info right column). As a rule, the publisher is also the author of the press releases and the attached image, sound and information material. The use of information published here is generally free of charge for personal information and editorial processing. Please clarify any copyright issues with the stated publisher before further use. In case of publication, please send a specimen copy to service@pressebox.de.