European Space Agency: Copernicus Sentinel-5P satellite delivered its first images of air pollution

PARIS, 22-Nov-2017 — /EuropaWire/ — Launched into orbit on 13 October, the Copernicus Sentinel-5P satellite has delivered its first images of air pollution. To mark this important milestone, ESA, the European Commission and the German Aerospace Centre DLR invite media representatives to an exclusive viewing of these tantalising first results, which surpass expectations.

The event, which will also include explanations about how the mission works and how it is set to benefit  weather forecasting and monitoring air quality around the world, will be held at DLR in Oberpfaffenhofen near Munich on 1 December. The media will also have the opportunity to conduct interviews.

Sentinel-5 Precursor – or Sentinel-5P for short – is the sixth Copernicus Sentinel satellite. It carries the most advanced multispectral imaging spectrometer to date: Tropomi. This state-of-the-art instrument will map pollutants such as nitrogen dioxide, methane, carbon monoxide and aerosols, all of which affect the air we breathe and our climate.

Since the satellite was launched, the instrument has been going through a planned decontamination process. Now, however, the door that kept Tropomi sealed for this purpose has been opened, allowing light to enter and the first images to be taken.

Even at this early stage in the mission’s life, these first results exceed expectations. These exciting new images offer a taster of what’s in store once it has been fully commissioned for the task of mapping the entire planet every day with unprecedented accuracy, to take air-quality forecasting to a new level.


The Copernicus Sentinel-5P ‘First Light’ Event will be held on 1 December 2017 at DLR Oberpfaffenhofen, Germany





Welcome addresses by Stefan Dech from DLR and Josef Aschbacher, Director of ESA Earth Observation Programmes


Talk by Cristina Ananasso, Policy Officer at EC, about Copernicus, atmosphere and climate


Talk by Kevin McMullan, ESA’s Sentinel-5P Project Manager, about reaching ‘first light’

Diego Loyolafrom DLR and Pepijn Veefkind from KNMI talk about mission challenges and reveal the first findings


Explanations from ESA’s Claus Zehner and DLR’s Erhard Diedrich about the next steps



Tour of DLR processing and archiving facilities


Lunch and interview opportunities

For further information and registration, please send an email to:

Registered journalists will be able to ‘dial in’ via a telephone line to participate in the Q&A session. The number to dial will be sent prior to the event.


The event will be streamed live on ESA’s Sentinel-5P website. This website also provides information and news on the mission.

For information about the EC Copernicus Programme, please visit

About the European Space Agency

The European Space Agency (ESA) provides Europe’s gateway to space.

ESA is an intergovernmental organisation, created in 1975, with the mission to shape the development of Europe’s space capability and ensure that investment in space delivers benefits to the citizens of Europe and the world.

ESA has 22 Member States: Austria, Belgium, the Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Ireland, Italy, Luxembourg, the Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland and the United Kingdom. Slovenia is an Associate Member.

ESA has established formal cooperation with six Member States of the EU. Canada takes part in some ESA programmes under a Cooperation Agreement.

By coordinating the financial and intellectual resources of its members, ESA can undertake programmes and activities far beyond the scope of any single European country. It is working in particular with the EU on implementing the Galileo and Copernicus programmes as well as with Eumetsat for the development of meteorological missions.

ESA develops the launchers, spacecraft and ground facilities needed to keep Europe at the forefront of global space activities.

Today, it develops and launches satellites for Earth observation, navigation, telecommunications and astronomy, sends probes to the far reaches of the Solar System and cooperates in the human exploration of space. ESA also has a strong applications programme developing services in Earth observation, navigation and telecommunications.

Learn more about ESA at

For further information, please contact:
ESA Media Relations Office
Tel: +33 1 53 69 72 99

SOURCE: European Space Agency


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