European Satellite Sentinel-2B launched into Earth Orbit

European Satellite Sentinel-2B launched into Earth Orbit


The European Space Agency (ESA) confirms its status as major player in the contemporary space industry with the launch of a new Earth observation satellite. On Monday, 6th March, Sentinel-2B began its journey to our planet’s orbit from ESA’s spaceport in French Guiana. The satellite weighing 1.1 tonnes was carried into space by a Vega rocket developed by the French company Arianespace in collaboration with the Italian Space Agency, reaching Earth orbit 57 minutes and 57 seconds into the flight.

major player (ˈmeɪdʒə(r) ˈpleɪə(r))  = Hauptakteur

to launch (lɔːntʃ) = (hier) schießen

orbit (ˈɔːbɪt) = Umlaufbahn

spaceport (speɪspɔːt) = Raumfahrtzentrum

to weigh (weɪ) = wiegen

The satellite was conceived as the second component of the Sentinel-2 mission aimed at providing data for the Copernicus environmental monitoring system of the EU, which represents the scientific base of the Union’s environmental policies. In three to four months‘  time, Sentinel 2-B will begin to transmit pictures of the planet’s surface, in this way complementing the activity of its twin, Sentinel-2A, which was launched in 2015. The two satellites will orbit the Earth on the same path, but at a distance of 180 degrees from each other, which will enable them to create a complete map of the planet every five days, providing the ESA and the EU with about four terabytes worth of data every day.

to conceive (kənˈsiːv) = entwerfen

environmental monitoring system = Umweltwächter

policy (ˈpɒləsi) = Regelwerk

to complement (ˈkɒmplɪment) = ergänzen

worth of sth = im Wert von


Besides being available at no cost for everyone to enjoy, the images taken by the Sentinel missions for the EU Copernicus programme have numerous applications in different domains. According to ESA, the Sentinel-2 satellites will help “improve agricultural practices, monitor the world’s forests, detect pollution in lakes and coastal waters, and contribute to disaster mapping.” Further uses are in urban planning, the study of the cryosphere and the conservation of biodiversity.

to monitor (ˈmɒnɪtə(r)) = überwachen

coastal waters (ˈkəʊstl ˈwɔːtəz) = Küstengewässer

mapping (ˈmæpɪŋ) = Kartographierung

urban planning (ˈɜːbən ˈplænɪŋ) = Stadtplanung

conservation of biodiversity = Biodiversitätsschütz

The launch represents another step forward made by the European Space Agency in the observation of our planet, at the same time illustrating the way in which the space industry supports the political decision-makers in the creation of sustainable policies by providing valuable scientific material.

sustainable (səˈsteɪnəbl) = nachhaltig

valuable (ˈvæljuəbl) = wertvoll

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