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© airbus Business | June 23, 2015

Number two took to the sky

The second satellite in the Copernicus program – Sentinel-2A – has been successfully launched. Manufactured by Airbus, one of the main subcontractors for the satellite is Ruag Space.
During the night - European time that is - the second satellite in the European Space Agency program Copernicus was launched. The satellites main contractor is Airbus Defence and Space. One of the prominent subcontractors is Ruag Space, providing the on-board computer, a GPS receiver and the telemetry antennas.

“Sentinel 2 is the next important milestone to be deployed within Europe's Copernicus programme for which Airbus Defence and Space is a key contributor. In particular, we are strongly involved in the Copernicus space segment delivering four satellites and eleven instruments,” said François Auque, Head of Space Systems at Airbus.

Sentinel-2A, the second in the Copernicus satellite family, carries a multispectral camera that will deliver image data from the visible up to the infrared spectrum. From an orbit of about 800 kilometre altitude, any point on Earth can be observed at least once within a period of 5 days. This results in a variety of data for environmental and safety related applications. For example, the data gathered by Sentinel-2A will help to improve the mapping of vegetation cover, land use and surface water.

The mission has been supported by the French space agency CNES (provides expertise in image processing and calibration) and by the German Aerospace Center DLR (provides the laser communication payload, developed by Tesat Spacecom, a subsidiary of Airbus Defence and Space in Germany).

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