Earth Imaging Journal: Remote Sensing, Satellite Images, Satellite Imagery
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This historic first image was taken on Feb. 29, 2016, by Sentinel-3A’s Ocean and Land Colour Instrument, which features 21 distinct bands, a resolution of 300 meters and a swath width of 1,270 kilometers. (Credit: Copernicus Data 2016)

This historic first image was taken on Feb. 29, 2016, by Sentinel-3A’s Ocean and Land Colour Instrument, which features 21 distinct bands, a resolution of 300 meters and a swath width of 1,270 kilometers. (Credit: Copernicus Data 2016)

Two weeks after its successful launch on Feb. 16, 2016, the Copernicus Sentinel-3A satellite captured its first image, the transition from day to night over Svalbard, Norway. The initial image shows the snow-covered archipelago as well as Arctic sea ice and some cloud features.

The satellite’s instruments, which include an Ocean and Land Colour Instrument (that captured this first image), a Sea and Land Surface Temperature Radiometer, a Synthetic Aperture Radar Altimeter, and a Microwave Radiometer, will allow ocean ecosystems to be monitored, support vegetation mapping and inland water monitoring, provide estimates of atmospheric aerosol and clouds, and help monitor and understand large-scale global dynamics as well as ocean and weather forecasting.

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