On December 23, 2021, Copernicus Sentinel-1B skilled an anomaly associated to the instrument electronics energy provide supplied by the satellite tv for pc platform, leaving it unable to ship radar knowledge. Spacecraft operators and engineers have been working tirelessly since then to rectify the problem. Sadly, regardless of all concerted efforts, ESA (European Area Company) and the European Fee announce that it’s the finish of the mission for Sentinel-1B. Copernicus Sentinel-1A stays absolutely operational and plans are in power to launch Sentinel-1C as quickly as potential.
ESA’s Director of Earth Statement Packages, Simonetta Cheli, acknowledged, “Sadly, we now have to announce the top of the mission for the Copernicus Sentinel-1B satellite tv for pc. The conclusion drawn by the Anomaly Evaluate Board is that it’s inconceivable to get well the 28V regulated bus of the satellite tv for pc’s C-band artificial aperture radar antenna energy provide unit, which is required to offer energy to the radar electronics.
“Sentinel-1A stays very wholesome in orbit, persevering with to ship high-quality radar photographs for a large number of functions. Our focus is on fast-tracking the launch of Sentinel-1C. Now, due to the profitable inaugural flight of the Vega-C rocket on July 13, we, with Arianespace, are focusing on the launch within the second quarter of 2023.”
European Fee’s Performing Director for Area (Directorate Normal for Protection Business and Area), Paraskevi Papantoniou, acknowledged, “The everlasting unavailability of Sentinel-1B satellite tv for pc represents an essential loss for the European Union’s area program and the European Fee is engaged to mitigate its influence. We notably managed to maneuver ahead the launch of Sentinel-1C satellite tv for pc.
“In the meantime, Copernicus Contributing Mission knowledge, together with from European New Area corporations, will proceed for use to assist essentially the most crucial Copernicus Providers merchandise which are affected. The preparations for the de-orbiting of Sentinel-1B satellite tv for pc are an instance of our joint dedication, for the European Union and ESA, to wash and accountable area, utilizing the EU’s Area Surveillance and Monitoring capabilities.”
In April 2014, Sentinel-1A was the primary satellite tv for pc to be launched for Copernicus, the Earth statement element of the European Union’s area program. Though the European Union is on the helm of Copernicus, ESA develops, builds, and launches the devoted Sentinel satellites. It additionally operates a number of the missions.
After the Sentinel-1B launch in April 2016, with the mission comprising two an identical satellites orbiting 180° aside, the mission was in a position to picture the planet with a most repeat frequency of six days, all the way down to each day protection at excessive latitudes.
Carrying superior artificial aperture radar expertise to offer an all-weather, day-and-night provide of images of Earth’s floor, the bold Sentinel-1 mission raised the bar for spaceborne radar.
The mission advantages quite a few Copernicus providers and functions, similar to those who relate to Arctic sea-ice monitoring, iceberg monitoring, glacier-velocity monitoring, routine sea-ice mapping, surveillance of the marine surroundings together with oil-spill monitoring and ship detection for maritime safety, in addition to unlawful fisheries monitoring. It’s also used for monitoring floor deformation ensuing from subsidence, earthquakes, and volcanoes, mapping for forest, water, and soil administration, and mapping to assist humanitarian assist and disaster conditions.
With such a big function to play and customers counting on well timed knowledge, ESA acted as quickly because it was clear that Sentinel-1B’s energy concern may take some weeks to resolve, which was the hope on the finish of December.
ESA’s Sentinel-1 Mission Supervisor, Pierre Potin, stated, “Along with the European Fee we’re ensuring to bridge a number of the knowledge gaps by adjusting the Sentinel-1A statement plan and thru radar knowledge from different satellite tv for pc missions that contribute to the Copernicus program. For instance, we’re ready to make use of knowledge from Canada’s Radarsat-2 and Radarsat Constellation Mission, Germany’s TerraSAR-X, Italy’s COSMO-SkyMed, and Spain’s PAZ to assist operational sea-ice monitoring for the Copernicus Marine Surroundings Monitoring Service.
“Whereas we proceed to attempt to reduce inconvenience to customers and push to get Sentinel-1C into orbit as quickly as we will, we’re additionally making ready for the accountable disposal of Sentinel-1B.”
The Sentinel-1 Spacecraft Operations Supervisor, Alistair O’Connell, added, “We now have Sentinel-1B underneath management, all different methods besides the ability affected unit, which prevents the radar from being switched on, proceed to operate nominally and we carry out common monitoring of the spacecraft well being and routine orbit management maneuvers. We’ll maintain Sentinel-1B underneath management till we will start the disposal course of, which we are going to begin after Sentinel-1C is safely in orbit.
“Deorbiting Sentinel-1B might be carried out in line with area particles mitigation necessities that had been in place for ESA tasks on the time of design of Sentinel-1A and Sentinel-1B, which means that re-entry within the environment will happen inside 25 years. In follow, the re-entry period is anticipated to be a lot shorter.”
Copernicus Sentinel-1C encompasses a world premiere of a new separation mechanism that may assist keep away from area particles.
A summary of the outline of the anomaly, of the investigations, and the restoration makes an attempt, in addition to the parallel Sentinel-1 mission stage actions and approach ahead is obtainable on the Sentinel Online website.