Thursday, October 16, 2014

Airbus Gets Order for Weather Satellites Worth EUR1.3 Billion: European Space Agency Places Order for Six Weather Satellites

The Wall Street Journal

By  Friedrich Geiger

Updated Oct. 16, 2014 12:47 p.m. ET

BERLIN—The European Space Agency has ordered weather satellites worth 1.3 billion euros ($1.7 billion) from Airbus Group NV, the plane maker said Thursday.

Airbus has signed contracts with the ESA to design and build six satellites meant to continue and improve weather forecasts. The satellites have a mass of about four metric tons each. Three of the satellites focus on optical instruments and atmospheric sounders, and the other three on microwave instruments.

Airbus’ defense and space unit will lead an industrial consortium comprising more than 100 companies in 16 European countries, to supply more than 150 different pieces of equipment and services for the spacecraft platforms and instruments.

The launch of the first satellite is scheduled for 2021. The satellites are expected to enhance meteorological data with improved spectral and spatial resolution.

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