China-France satel­lite gets first ocean data

Global Times - - TOPNEWS - By Liu Caiyu

The China-France Oceanog­ra­phy Satel­lite, or known as the CFOSat, has ob­tained more than 400 pieces of ma­rine en­vi­ron­men­tal data in its first batch of data trans­mis­sions, a month af­ter it took off from China’s Gobi Desert.

The data in­cludes the distri­bu­tion and moves of cy­clones, lo­ca­tion and in­ten­sity of typhoons, which helps re­searchers fore­cast the weather more ac­cu­rately, Science and Tech­nol­ogy Daily re­ported on Thurs­day, quot­ing the Min­istry of Nat­u­ral Re­sources.

Liu Jian­qiang, the project’s chief sci­en­tist, who is also a deputy di­rec­tor-gen­eral of the Ocean Satel­lite Cen­ter of Min­istry of Nat­u­ral Re­sources, told the Global Times on Thurs­day that the satel­lite, still in the test phase, is ex­pected to op­er­ate af­ter three months.

Ma­rine data re­ceived by the satel­lite will im­prove the ac­cu­racy of weather fore­casts for China and France and boost in­ter­na­tional co­op­er­a­tion in this field, Liu noted.

The satel­lite has ob­tained data of Typhoon Man-yi, in­clud­ing its fea­tures, lo­ca­tion, move­ment and speed.

It started trans­mit­ting data via the mi­crowave scat­terom­e­ter and spec­trom­e­ter since Novem­ber 2 and 3, the re­port said.

The satel­lite, atop a Long March2C car­rier rocket, took off on Oc­to­ber 29 from the Ji­uquan Satel­lite Launch Cen­ter in North­west China’s Gobi Desert and en­tered a sun-syn­chro­nous or­bit 520 kilo­me­ters above Earth, the Xin­hua News Agency said.

De­vel­oped by the China Na­tional Space Ad­min­is­tra­tion and the Cen­tre Na­tional d’Etudes Spa­tiales, France’s space agency, the satel­lite can con­duct 24-hour ob­ser­va­tions of global wave spec­trums, ef­fec­tive wave height and ocean sur­face wind fields.

With the two in­no­va­tive radar in­stru­ments – the scat­terom­e­ter was de­vel­oped by China to mea­sure the strength and di­rec­tion of wind and a wave spec­trom­e­ter de­vel­oped by France to sur­vey the length, height and di­rec­tion of waves – the satel­lite can help sci­en­tists col­lect data about wind and waves at the same lo­ca­tion for the first time.

China pre­vi­ously launched six oceanic satel­lites, with the first of­fi­cially ap­proved for de­vel­op­ment in 1997. Two other satel­lites, the HY-1C and the HY-2B, were also sent into space this year ahead of the CFOSat.

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