Sentinel-1B already started transmission. The first image, taken on 28 of April at 05:37 GMT, captured the Austfonna glacier, Svalbard. Sentinel-1B produced its first images only two hours after the radar was switched on – a record time for a space radar.
“Getting a satellite into orbit is always thrilling and every time we do this I am quite nervous. Our engineers and industry have shown what we can achieve with this fourth Sentinel delivering a first image in record time. We have another important part of the Copernicus missions in orbit. A great achievement from a great team.”
At ESA’s operations centre in Darmstadt, Germany, mission controllers thoroughly checked the satellite’s control, navigation and power systems, among others, during the intense first few orbits. In the coming months, the satellite will be tested and calibrated before it is declared to be operational.
Sentinel-1A is used by Copernicus services as well as by many users worldwide, under a free and open data policy. More than 30 000 users have registered to download Sentinel data, taking some 4 million products already.