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Why the next generation of weather satellites will tear everything up

Why the next generation of weather satellites will tear everything up

Rumors abound in the most accurate weather reports. Scientists and forecasters are absolutely intrigued. The first of the satellites Weather report Second generation Europeans, MetOp-SG by its small name, are assembled in clean rooms Airbus Defense and Space (ADS) and is scheduled to launch “in October or November 2024”. No longer with the Russian Soyuz launcher, but with the Ariane 6 in line with the new international environment.

Cyril Grovier, CNRS research director at the Dynamic Meteorological Laboratory (LMP) in Toulouse, said: “This is one of the most accurate missions ever undertaken to study the atmosphere, because when the same infrared techniques are used to study the atmosphere, the French” excel. ” Simply “twice as efficient” and more accurate than the first wave of satellites.

Embedded in the satellite, IASI-NG The Earth’s entire atmosphere can be explored twice every 24 hours, from top to bottom, in strips 2,400 km long and 100 km wide. “By providing parameters such as temperature or steam columns, it can feed Météo-France forecast models and upgrade them over several days,” CNES project manager Franசois Bermud underlined. But the instrument can very closely monitor polluting atmospheric molecules. Kathy Killerbox from the Atmospheric and Space Observatory (Latmos) says: “Industrial fires are like ammonia. Or ash during a volcanic eruption.

Has been dormant for 15 years

According to climate experts such as Cyril Crevoisier, they can study climate change over a long period of time, using “very weak temperature signals, sometimes a hundredth of a degree”. “From the launch of IASI in 2006 to the last IASI-NG planned in 2038, we have a 50-year plan of atmospheric surveillance with the same instrument. Therefore data integration,” the researcher explains.

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Beyond the expected performance, IASI-NG has this original character, which will be produced in three copies one after the other, and three of the second-generation MetOp satellites will be operated by the European Organization for the Exploitation of Weather Satellites (Eumetsat). So the last instrument will sleep for 15 years while waiting for its flight.