At the beginning of October we had already discussed the future launch of the satellite Sentinel-6 Michael Freilich. Today the day has finally arrived thanks also to the collaboration of SpaceX and its vector Falcon 9 which allowed the satellite resulting from the collaboration between NASA and ESA to be put into orbit.
Sentinel-6 Michael Freilich will monitor sea levels
The mission of the satellite Sentinel-6 Michael Freilich is to monitor the sea level. This is an issue related to global change and which could have a major impact on many populations living in coastal areas, both in tropical areas, but also in countries like Italy (just think of Venice). The satellite will provide information on 95% of the seas (not covered by ice) every 10 days.
The main mission of this unit has a duration of five and a half years where very precise data will be collected both related to ocean level but also those related to temperature is atmospheric humidity. New information that will allow you to always have a greater knowledge of the events and also giving the opportunity to improve our predictive models.
The launch of the satellite Sentinel-6 Michael Freilich it took place from the US Air Force Base at Vandenberg in California. As written above, the chosen pitcher is a Falcon 9 of SpaceX which thus marks a collaboration “three” between Elon Musk’s company and the two space agencies (although in reality the partnership is wider and includes the European Commission, EUMETSAT, NOAA and CNES).
However, it will be necessary to wait about an hour and a half after take-off to have the first contact between the satellite and the ground stations (in Alaska) and to have a precise monitoring of the situation. The first stage of the Falcon 9 instead he returned landing on the mainland as already seen on other occasions for the launches of SpaceX even if a brief lack of the video signal gave some apprehension. This time the drone-barge was not used due to the trajectory chosen for the launch.
Interestingly, this is unit A of a pair of satellites: unit B will be launched in five years and will allow for extended monitoring as well as improving the technologies used. Considering the importance (in various ways) of climate change, to have one more tool to understand it is crucial not only in scientific terms but also social.