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Successful launch support by KSAT for Sentinel 6

Sentinel-6 Michael Freilich satellite was launched on a SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket from Vandenberg, California the 21. November. KSAT supported the satellite successfully from first orbit until LEOP was completed.  

The operations during launch and early operations phase (LEOP) are among the most critical of a mission. Supporting launch vehicles and satellites in this critical phase is an art brought to perfection by KSAT.  

Through our years of experience in supporting launch and early operations, we have developed a set of rigorous test procedures, which allow us to ensure the extremely high standard of service that is necessary for these critical stages of support.  A dedicated team of KSAT engineers has worked closely together with ESOC in meticulous preparations; end-to-end and performance testing, Ground Station operation validation and simulation before launch.

The satellite was successfully supported from the unique Antarctic Ground Station, Troll until LEOP provided support for three days following the launch, until the mission was deemed successful and LEOP completed.

Sentinel-6 Michael Freilich satellite is the latest in a series of spacecraft designed to monitor our oceans.

About the mission

Sentinel-6 Michael Freilich satellite is the latest in a series of spacecraft designed to monitor our oceans. This joint U.S.- European effort will collect the most accurate global data yet on sea level and how it changes over time. The spacecraft will also collect precise data of atmospheric temperature and humidity that will help improve weather forecasts and climate models.

With global sea level rising because of climate change , measuring and understanding changes in sea level allows us to assess the vulnerability of coastal cities and towns to flooding as we look toward the future. Precise sea level measurements can also be used to track ocean currents, which transport heat from one part of the planet to another, which in turn influence Earth's energy budget and weather patterns.

The satellite will be followed in 2025 by its twin, Sentinel-6B. Together, the pair is tasked with extending our nearly 30-year-long record of global sea surface height measurements. Instruments aboard the satellites will also provide atmospheric data that will improve weather forecasts, climate models, and hurricane tracking.

The satellite is named after former NASA Earth Science Division Director Michael Freilich.

Top Image:The Copernicus Sentinel-6 Michael Freilich ocean-monitoring satellite was launched at 18:17 (CET) on 21 November 2020 from Vandenberg air force base, California. (©ESA, S. Corvaja)