Why Sentinel-2 mission is crucial for environment monitoring?

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Sentinel-2 is an Earth observation mission developed by ESA as part of the Copernicus Programme to perform terrestrial observations in support of services such as forest monitoring, land cover changes detection, and natural disaster management. It consists of two identical satellites, Sentinel-2A and Sentinel-2B.

The Sentinel-2 mission has the following capabilities:

Multi-spectral data with 13 bands in the visible, near infrared, and short wave infrared part of the spectrum.

Systematic global coverage of land surfaces from 56° S to 84° N, coastal waters, and all of the Mediterranean Sea.

Revisiting every 5 days under the same viewing angles. At high latitudes, Sentinel-2 swath overlap and some regions will be observed twice or more every 5 days, but with different viewing angles.

Spatial resolution of 10 m, 20 m and 60 m.

290 km field of view.

Free and open data policy.

Sentinel-2 will serve a wide range of applications related to Earth’s land surface and coastal zones.

The mission will mainly provide information for agricultural and forestry practices and for helping manage food security. Satellite images will be used to determine various plant indices such as leaf area chlorophyll and water content indexes. This is particularly important for effective yield prediction and applications related to Earth’s vegetation.

As well as monitoring plant growth, Sentinel-2 can be used to map changes in land cover and to monitor the world’s forests. It will also provide information on pollution in lakes and coastal waters. Images of floods, volcanic eruptions and landslides contribute to disaster mapping and help humanitarian relief efforts.

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