Tuesday, October 4, 2022

ESA selects Harmony as tenth Earth Explorer mission

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ESA has chosen Harmony, to maneuver to the following section, Phase-A, of growth because the tenth Earth Explorer mission. Harmony is envisaged as a mission with two satellites that orbit in formation with one of many Copernicus Sentinel-1 satellites to deal with key scientific questions associated to ocean, ice and land dynamics. Credit: ESA

Following preparatory actions and a stringent course of ESA Member States immediately formally chosen Harmony for implementation because the tenth Earth Explorer mission throughout the FutureEO program. This distinctive satellite tv for pc mission idea is, subsequently, now set to develop into a actuality to offer a wealth of latest details about our oceans, ice, earthquakes and volcanoes—which is able to make vital contributions to local weather analysis and threat monitoring.

Pivotal to ESA’s FutureEO program, Earth Explorers are pioneering analysis missions that present how novel observing methods result in new scientific findings about our residence planet. Advancing science and expertise, they handle questions which have a direct bearing on local weather change and societal points comparable to the provision of meals, water, vitality, assets and public well being.

Earth is a extremely dynamic system the place the transport and exchanges of vitality and matter are regulated by a mess of processes and suggestions mechanisms. Untangling these complicated processes to raised perceive how Earth works as a system is a serious problem.

Thanks to Harmony, the image is ready to develop into a complete lot clearer.

By advancing science, Harmony will, in flip, additionally assist handle societal points comparable to these specified by the World Climate Research Program’s Grand Challenges and various the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals.

This thrilling new mission will comprise two an identical satellites orbiting Earth in convoy with a Copernicus Sentinel-1 satellite tv for pc. Each Harmony satellite tv for pc will carry a receive-only artificial aperture radar and a multi-view thermal-infrared instrument.

Together with observations from Sentinel-1, Harmony will ship a variety of distinctive high-resolution observations of movement occurring at or close to Earth’s floor.

Harmony’s Lead Investigator, Paco López-Dekker, from the Delft University of Technology within the Netherlands, defined, “Harmony will, for instance, be used to quantify the processes that govern the change of momentum, warmth and moisture between the ocean floor and the air above. These exchanges affect processes within the decrease environment, drive climate patterns, and have an effect on our local weather.

“It may even be used to review deformation and movement dynamics on the quickly altering ice-sheet edges for a greater understanding of sea-level rise.

“In addition, Harmony will observe the movement of mountain glaciers, that are important in offering freshwater to lots of of thousands and thousands of individuals, so the significance of understanding how they’re altering can’t be overstated.

“And, Harmony will be used to measure small shifts in the shape of the land surface such as those related to earthquakes and volcanic activity, and therefore contribute to risk monitoring.”

Over the final 4 years, the Harmony idea has undergone strict feasibility scrutiny and a pre-development course of, culminating in ESA’s Program Board for Earth Observation (PB-EO) accepting ESA’s proposal, based mostly additionally on the science advise and the advice from the Advisory Committee for Earth Observation (ACEO).

René Forsberg Acting Chair of ESA’s Advisory Committee on Earth Observation, stated, “ESA’s pioneering Earth Explorer research missions are fundamental to Europe’s position as a world leader in Earth observation. We are extremely happy to see Harmony join this extraordinary family of missions and we are certain that will bring significant advances in our understanding of the workings of our fragile planet.”

Simonetta Cheli, Director of ESA’s Earth Observation Programs, added, “Indeed, Earth Explorers are pivotal to our FutureEO program—a program that harnesses novel concepts to develop pioneering satellite tv for pc missions and ideas and to check modern applied sciences. By nurturing imaginative new methods of utilizing Earth statement, FutureEO allows scientific excellence to flourish to deal with societal challenges of tomorrow.

“The novel expertise and observing methods confirmed by the Earth Explorers are additionally key to creating ‘operational’ missions, comparable to Europe’s Copernicus Sentinel missions, which ship systematic knowledge for environmental companies.

“In the case of Harmony, we envisage that its technology will be important for enhancing the capabilities of the Copernicus Sentinel-1 Next Generation mission.”

For Harmony, the following step will then contain fine-tuning the mission design and the following construct, with a view to launching the satellites in 2029.


ESA strikes ahead with Harmony


Provided by
European Space Agency


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ESA selects Harmony as tenth Earth Explorer mission (2022, September 23)
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