ESA: From green to brown in a month

With temperatures soaring and no rain to speak of, Europe is in the grip of a heatwave. As this year’s heatwave continues, the Copernicus Sentinel-3 mission reveals once again how the colour of our vegetation has changed in just one month. These two images cover the same area: part of Ireland, the UK, the Netherlands, Belgium, part of Germany and part of France, but the difference between them couldn’t be more striking. The first, captured on 28 June 2018, is predominantly green, depicting healthy vegetation. The second, captured on 25 July 2018, however, is mainly brown, showing just how much the vegetation has changed owing to the long hot dry spell Europe has been enduring over the last weeks.

The Copernicus Sentinel-3 mission also offers a wider view of northern Germany, Denmark and Sweden, showing the stark difference between vegetation on 30 June 2018 and 19 July 2018: European drought.



Aeolus is the first space mission to acquire profiles of the wind on a global scale. These near-realtime observations will improve the accuracy of numerical weather and climate prediction and advance our understanding of tropical dynamics and processes relevant to climate variability.

ESA’s wind mission

First VENµS scenes of Ireland

The first scenes from the VENµS mission from Ireland have been made available on CNES’s Theia website. I’ve processed the first available level 2A surface reflectance product using ESA SNAP software. This scene was acquired on 29 June 2018 over the northwestern Ireland counties of Mayo, Roscommon, Sligo, Leitrim, Cavan, and the Northern Irish (UK) county of Fermanagh.

Below are shown two images, the left being true colour (red = Band 7, green = Band 4, blue = Band 2), and the right being a false-colour NIR-Red-Green composite (red = Band 11, green = Band 7, blue = Band 4).


In the future, expect support to be added to the open-source Irish Earth Observation Python module and the associated IEOtools.

Student applications now open for first ESA Academy’s Earth Observation Satellite System Design Training Course

ESA’s Education Office is looking for 30 highly motivated engineering Master’s and PhD students to participate in the Earth Observation Satellite System Design Training Course 2018. This pilot Course will be held from 1 – 5 October in the new ESA Academy Training and Learning Facility (TLF) in ESA’s ESEC-Galaxia, Belgium.

Student applications now open: The deadline for applications is 13 August 2018. See who can apply and how!


Copernicus Sentinel-3B delivers first images

Copernicus Sentinel-3B delivers first images: Less than two weeks after it was launched, the Copernicus Sentinel-3B satellite has delivered its first images of Earth. Exceeding expectations, this first set of images include the sunset over Antarctica, sea ice in the Arctic and a view of northern Europe.

ESA COPERNICUS: Meet Sentinel-3

The second Sentinel-3 satellite, Sentinel-3B, is set for launch on 25 April. Discover this multitalented mission and follow preparations for the liftoff of Europe’s next Copernicus satellite

Sentinel-3 latest news

Sentinel-3 over land