European Space Agency launches Sentinel 2B satellite
The European Space Agency (ESA) has launched a new earth observation satellite as part of the EU Copernicus environmental monitoring system. The "Sentinel 2B" earth observation satellite on Vega rocket blasted off Kourou Spaceport in the French Guiana at 0149 GMT Tuesday، according to the agency’s official website. The satellite weighs 1.1 tons (2،200 pounds) and is capable of taking photographs and making infrared maps. The Sentinel 2B will complement the other satellite Sentinel 2A already in orbit. The Sentinel 2A was launched in June 2015. The two satellites will view Earth with 180-degree-angle in the same orbit but different positions and every five days the satellites will produce maps of all land surfaces and coastal waters. This will give crucial information to scientists and politicians about urban planning، air pollution، forestlands and glaciers. ESA Director of Earth Observation Programs Josef Aschbacher said: "Sentinel-2A gets its twin brother in space with the launch of Sentinel-2B today. “This allows global coverage every five days with the 13-channel high-resolution sensor، which is unprecedented in this class of satellites. I look forward to many new applications coming from Sentinel-2 now that this constellation is complete." As part of the Sentinel program - composed of six families in total - Sentinel 1A، Sentinel 1B، Sentinel 2A and Sentinel 3A were previously launched into space.