Navigation Links
GOCE Earth explorer satellite to look at the Earth's surface and core

The European Space Agency is about to launch the most sophisticated mission ever to investigate the Earth's gravitational field and to map the reference shape of our planet the geoid - with unprecedented resolution and accuracy.

The Gravity field and steady-state Ocean Circulation Explorer (GOCE) will be placed onto a low altitude near sun-synchronous orbit by a Russian Rockot vehicle launched from the Plesetsk Cosmodrome in Northern Russia, some 800 km north of Moscow. Lift-off is scheduled to take place at 16:21 CEST (14:21 UTC) on Wednesday 10 September. The launcher is operated by Eurockot Launch Services, a joint venture between EADS Astrium and the Khrunichev Space Centre (Russia).

ESA's 1-tonne spacecraft carries a set of six state-of-the-art high-sensitivity accelerometers to measure the components of the gravity field along all three axes. The data collected will provide a high-resolution map of the geoid (the reference surface of the planet) and of gravitational anomalies. Such a map will not only greatly improve our knowledge and understanding of the Earth's internal structure, but will also be used as a much better reference for ocean and climate studies, including sea-level changes, oceanic circulation and ice caps dynamics survey. Numerous applications are expected in climatology, oceanography and geophysics, as well as for geodetic and positioning activities.

To make this mission possible, ESA, its industrial partners (45 European companies led by Thales Alenia Space) and the science community had to overcome an impressive technical challenge by designing a satellite that will orbit the Earth close enough to gather high-accuracy gravitational data while being able to filter out disturbances caused by the remaining traces of the atmosphere in low Earth orbit (at an altitude of only 260 km). This resulted in a slender 5-m-long arrowhead shape for aerodynamics with low power ion thrusters to compensate for the atmospheric drag.

GOCE is the first Core Mission of the Earth Explorer programme undertaken by ESA in 1999 to foster research on the Earth's atmosphere, biosphere, hydrosphere, cryosphere and interior, on their interactions and on the impact of human activities on these natural processes. It will be the first in a whole series of Earth Explorer missions with five launches to take place within the next two years.

Two more Core Missions, selected to address specific topics of major public concern are already under development: ADM-Aeolus for atmospheric dynamics (2010), and EarthCARE to investigate the Earth's radiative balance (2013). Three smaller Earth Explorer Opportunity Missions are also in preparation: CryoSat-2 to measure ice sheet thickness (2009), SMOS to study soil moisture and ocean salinity (2009) and Swarm to survey the evolution of the magnetic field (2010).


Contact: Franco Bonacina
European Space Agency

Related medicine news :

1. The science behind the food we eat and the earth on which it grows
2. Earths Oxygen May Have Arrived Earlier
3. ASTAR Air Cargo, The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints and DHL to Help Peruvian Earthquake Victims
4. Childrens Hospital Los Angeles Turns Off the Tap With Green Earth Waterless Carwash
5. Europes Columbus laboratory leaves Earth
6. Earth from Space: Splitting iceberg
7. New portrait of Earth shows land cover as never before
8. Nature Made(R) Liquid Softgels Help Fuel Oprahs A New Earth Web Event
9. Whole Foods Market(R) Announces Eco-Conscious Youth Hosts for Whole Earth Generation(TM) Show
10. Contract signed for ESAs Sentinel-3 Earth observation satellite
11. Mannatech Goes Green and Supports Local Earth Day Celebrations
Post Your Comments:
(Date:11/30/2015)... ... November 30, 2015 , ... ... companies, announced today that it has officially launched a sleek, mobile-ready and user-centric ... that his company’s new website clearly outlines the benefits that its SEO services ...
(Date:11/30/2015)... Garden City, NY (PRWEB) , ... December 01, ... ... (NAPW) honors Christina Colon as a 2015-2016 inductee into its ... for leadership in pharmacy. NAPW is the nation’s leading networking organization exclusively for ...
(Date:11/30/2015)... ... December 01, 2015 , ... Live Very Well is ... insurance plans on . The multi-carrier insurance exchange platform offers individual ... allowing consumers to compare, quote and match plans to meet their needs. ...
(Date:11/30/2015)... ... November 30, 2015 , ... Stress, anxiety, illness, infection or even a need ... tumors? , Heather Spader, MD, a new pediatric neurosurgeon at Joe DiMaggio Children’s Hospital ... point to tumors. , “Bad headaches that don’t go away, that don’t ...
(Date:11/30/2015)... ... ... MOSI recently added two state-of-the-art augmented reality (AR) experiences from INDE Broadcast ... collection of interactive exhibits within the Kids In Charge! building. In collaboration with the ... closer than ever to a range of animals as they drink, sleep and play ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:11/30/2015)...  QT Vascular Ltd., together with its subsidiaries (the ... TriReme Medical LLC and Quattro Vascular Pte. Ltd., collectively ... assembly and distribution of advanced therapeutic solutions for the ... announce that a three-judge panel of the ... Federal Circuit ("Federal Circuit") has unanimously granted the Group ...
(Date:11/30/2015)... ) has ... Market 2015-2019" report to their offering. ... of the "Orphan Drugs Market 2015-2019" ... and Markets ( ) has announced the ... report to their offering. ...
(Date:11/30/2015)... -- IBA Molecular North America, Inc. (IBAMNA), a U.S. leader ... as of January 1, 2016, it will do business ... rebrand the company reflects a refined vision for the ... relationship with Zevacor Molecular.  Both IBAMNA and Zevacor Molecular ... Peter Burke , Vice President Sales and ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: