The European EarthCare mission will be entrusted to SpaceX

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The European Space Agency formalized on June 29 that the EarthCare Earth atmosphere observation satellite would be placed into orbit in early 2024 by a Falcon 9 launcher.

A mission at the service of the climate

Unsurprisingly, the Council of theEuropean Space Agencymeeting on June 28 and 29 in Stockholm, Sweden, endorsed the decision to entrust SpaceX the launch into polar sun-synchronous orbit of the mission EarthCare (Earth Clouds, Aerosols and Radiation Explorer – Earth clouds, aerosols and radiation explorer).

This mission is part of the program LivingPlanet of the’ESAand is developed in cooperation with the Jaxathe Japanese Space Agency.

It is dedicated to the study of the Earth’s radiation balance and its effects on the climate.

Its realization was entrusted to Airbus Defense and Space.

A satellite bigger than expected!

The passing ofAriadne 62 (late) to Vega C (grounded since the failure of the VV22 mission) had been decreed last October with the Falcon 9 American as a fallback solution.

In addition to the recent upheavals in the launch manifesto ofArianespacethe size of the satellite turned out to be “a bit larger than originally thought”, as confided Joseph Aschbacherspeaking to the press on June 29 at the exit of the Council of the ESA, obliging… cutouts of the fairing of Vega which would endanger its structure.

EarthCare is now scheduled to launch early next year, and the primary mission is expected to last 3 years.

John Walker Avatar