Space has become an undisputed diagnostic tool for detecting climatic and environmental changes on a planetary scale. More than half of the essential climate variables are measured from space. Airbus Defence and Space creates the technology that makes it possible.
- 27 Airbus built satellites already launched have direct or indirect applications for climate change monitoring, with more than 200 years accumulated in orbit experience.
- There are a further 18 satellites in development, including our last contracts: MERLIN (methane detection) and Sentinel-6/Jason-CS (global sea-surface height measurement).
- For the Copernicus space segment, Airbus is involved in all seven missions, as the prime contractor of five and responsible for instruments on Sentinel-1 and -3.
- ESA’s Earth Explorer programme delivers scientific Earth Observation data to the scientific community.
Our role in ESA’s Earth Explorer Programme
Prime contractor of 4 out of 6 satellites and delivering key instruments:
- CryoSAT-2: Measures the ice coverage at the Earth’s poles
- SWARM: 3 satellite constellation to measure the magnetic field
- Aeolus: First ever wind profiles
- Earthcare: Cloud and aerosol monitoring
EUMETSAT Meteorological Satellites
- Delivering long term accurate weather forecasting takes a unique satellite programme
- Identical datasets must be available over long timescales which leads to mission requirements of identical satellites launched in sequence
- MetOp Europe’s low-earth orbiting satellites for details weather data
- Three MetOp satellites were built together – today MetOp A & B are in orbit. MetOp C is in storage. The programme is planned until 2022
- The MetOp Second Generation satellite programme is already in development so it is ready to take over from 2020
- 6 satellites, 2 different models launched sequentially to give 21 years of operations
- The engineering challenges of building identical satellites and successfully storing them has been mastered by Airbus Defence and Space
Geo-Intelligence, satellite imagery and geo-solutions
Climate Change: Drivers for larger and long term use of satellite imagery are there
- New and more stringent regulations & policies
- International negotiations & monetisation of ecosystems
- Land use conflicts and increasing demand for certified „commodities“
- Risk mitigation to attract investors (public & private)
- Increased vulnerability due to frequent and severe climatic events