SpaceX/NASA successfully launch a Falcon 9 rocket from Vandenberg Air Force Base

  • SpaceX/NASA successfully launch a Falcon 9 rocket from Vandenberg Air Force Base

SpaceX/NASA successfully launch a Falcon 9 rocket from Vandenberg Air Force Base

SpaceX is set to launch a Falcon 9 from Vandenberg Air Force Base in California on Saturday morning, with a target liftoff time of 9:17 AM PST (12:17 PM EST).

Each Sentinel-6 probe carries a radar altimeter, which measures the time it takes for radar pulses to travel to Earth's surface and back again. The sibling satellites will provide continuity to the effort to monitor changes to Earth's sea surface topography. This satellite is the latest in that series, but it will collect the most accurate data yet on global sea level and how it is transforming in response to climate change.

Also on Sentinel-6 Michael Freilich is a global navigation satellite system radio occultation (GNSS-RO) instrument to provide measurements of the atmospheric temperature and moisture by measuring signals from GPS and other navigation satellites. Scientists can also use the data to predict areas where coastlines may change. For instance, the altimetry accumulated from Sentinel-6 could be joined with Earth's gravity estimations from NASA's Gravity Recovery and Climate Experiment (GRACE) satellites. "We're watching the rate of sea-level rise increase right before our very eyes, and it's satellites like this that allow us to do it", he said.

Tune in to ESA Web TV or ESA Facebook from 17:45 CET (08:45 PST) onwards to watch the launch live. We will have another decade of important measurements from this perspective.

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The mission's name was changed earlier this year to the late Michael Frisch, an oceanographer and director of NASA's Division of Earth Sciences from 2006 to 2019.

Freilich was instrumental in advancing efforts to monitor Earth's oceans from space. Craig Donlon, a Sentinel-6 project scientist at the European Space Agency, said in the same briefing that large cities like New York City and Amsterdam are particularly vulnerable to water causing floods among their residents. It still now provides observations of global ocean terrain.

Europe and the United States are sharing the $1.1 billion (900 million euro) cost of the mission, which includes the twin satellite.

In this Thursday, May 30, 2013 file photo Michael Freilich, director of NASA's earth science division, center, signs a ceremonial document turning over operational control of the Landsat 8 satellite to the U.S. Geological Survey at the USGS EROS Center north of Sioux Falls.

Continuous long-term monitoring of global sea level is key to understanding how our planet responds to global warming and climate change.

The complexity of expectations is that sea level rise is not proceeding at the same rate around the world. This multiplier effect could affect our weather.

"Back during hurricane Sandy, there was a huge storm surge and it even knocked out some of the gauges that measure sea level rise". Melting glaciers and ice sheets account for the majority of the transformation.

Aschbacher said measurements dating back to the 1990s show average sea levels rising first by about 3 millimeters (0.12 inches) per year, but in the past couple of years the annual rate was nearly 5 millimeters (0.2 inches).

Sentinel-6 will not be represented separately in products from the National Oceanic Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), but it will strengthen models, maps, NOAA and other partners in the mission it is already producing to keep the world's population safe from intensifying hurricanes, the representatives said.

"We are united by this great goal", said Nadia Vinogradova Schaeffer, the NASA program manager who oversees the team. "Sea level is impacted by these different factors that one discipline doesn't cover - so we've got to bring in experts to approach it from all angles".