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Phytoplankton play a crucial role in ocean biology and climate. Understanding the natural processes that influence phytoplankton primary production, and how they are changing as the planet warms, is vital. A new study, using data from the European Space Agency’s Climate Change Initiative, has produced a 20-year time-series of global primary production in the oceans – shedding new light on the ocean’s living carbon pump.
Radiologists are investigating people’s medical conditions and pregnancies remotely thanks to an ESA-backed robotic technology.
The set-up enables medics to care for some patients at a distance during the coronavirus pandemic.
Replay of a live streamed conversation on 4 May 2020, with European experts on caring for the planet, following the drop in gas emissions due to coronavirus containment measures.
Environmental pollution has fallen significantly since governments across Europe implemented stay-at-home policies. Nitrogen dioxide levels in some European capitals have more than halved.
Guests during the live discussion reflected on climate change, its impact on human life and how the COVID-19 pandemic could shape our future.
* Josef Aschbacher, Director of Earth Observation Programmes, ESA
* Jakob Blasel, Fridays for Future
* Alfredo Roma, Economist and Consultant
* Paolo Vineis, Professor of Environmental Epidemiology, Imperial College London
* Jan Wörner, ESA Director General
The discussion was moderated by Donatella Ponziani, Downstream Gateway Officer at ESA.
This is the first webinar in a series of five taking place in May and June, see ESA in a post-COVID world for more details.
During these unprecedented times of the COVID-19 lockdown, trying to work poses huge challenges for us all. For those that can, remote working is now pretty much the norm, but this is obviously not possible for everybody. One might assume that like many industries, the construction and testing of satellites has been put on hold, but engineers and scientists are finding ways of continuing to prepare Europe’s upcoming satellite missions such as the next Copernicus Sentinels.
An important new tool to combat climate change is now available. Using data from the Copernicus Sentinel-5P satellite, this new technology makes it possible to track and attribute methane emissions around the world.
Week in images: 27 April - 1 May 2020
Discover our week through the lens
A reasonably small 4-8 m asteroid recently flew by Earth, passing close to satellites orbiting in the geostationary ring at a distance of about 42 735 km from Earth’s centre and only about 1200 km from the nearest satellite.
During its 30 years in orbit around Earth, the NASA/ESA Hubble Space Telescope has witnessed the changing nature of spaceflight as the skies have filled with greater numbers of satellites, the International Space Station was born and in-space crashes and explosions have created clouds of fast-moving space debris.
Hubble itself has felt the impact of this debris, accumulating tiny impact craters across its solar panels that evidence a long and eventful life in space. So what can we learn from these impacts, and what does the future hold for Hubble?
Join us on Monday 4 May for a live streamed conversation with European experts on caring for the planet, following the drop in gas emissions due to coronavirus containment measures.
In early April, as the European-Japanese BepiColombo spacecraft was approaching our home planet ahead of the first flyby in its seven-year journey to Mercury, mission scientists invited amateur astronomers to observe the event from Earth and share their photos of this unique event.
Science instruments aboard the European-Japanese Mercury explorer BepiColombo are in excellent condition to gather high-quality data during the spacecraft’s long cruise to the innermost planet of the Solar System despite not having been designed for this purpose, teams collaborating on the mission learned during the spacecraft’s April flyby of Earth.
Take a break with ESA astronauts Alexander Gerst, Samantha Cristoforetti, Luca Parmitano and Thomas Pesquet as they discuss living and working in space. In this video, our astronauts talk about camera equipment and a virtual reality project called the International Space Station (ISS) Experience.
The images of Earth astronauts capture during their time in space are breathtaking, but footage from inside the Station is just as exciting. ISS Experience is a commercial initiative to create an immersive VR experience of life in space for people on Earth. Here, Luca explains ISS Experience to his fellow astronauts as they talk about plans to take VR cameras beyond the airlock.
This clip is part of a series of four filmed in February 2020, following Luca’s return from the ISS mission on 6 February. It was filmed in the crew quarters of the German Aerospace Center DLR’s :envihab facility next to ESA’s European Astronaut Centre in Cologne, Germany.
For more about Luca’s Beyond mission and other ESA astronaut-related content, visit the Exploration blog: https://blogs.esa.int/exploration/
Amid the COVID-19 pandemic, ESA has resumed its watch on the skies around our planet. The Agency’s Optical Ground Station observatory, 2 400 m above the shores of Tenerife, tracks orbital space debris and near-Earth asteroids.
Space technology is in action in Barcelona, Spain, as emergency responders employ two ESA-supplied telemedicine devices to triage and treat urgent patients.
The notion that rain could lead to a volcanic eruption may seem strange, but scientists from the University of Miami in the USA, have used information from satellites, including the Copernicus Sentinel-1 mission, to discover that a period of heavy rainfall may have triggered the four month-long eruption of Hawaii’s Kilauea volcano in 2018.