The Sentinel-2 Satellites Development Status and Preparations for Launch and in Orbit Commissioning
Spoto, François1; Sy, Omar2; Laberinti, Paolo2

GMES is a joint initiative of the European Commission (EC) and the European Space Agency (ESA), designed to establish a European capacity for the provision and use of operational monitoring information for environment and security applications. ESA’s role in GMES is to provide the definition and the development of the space- and ground-related system elements. GMES Sentinel-2 mission provides continuity to services relying on multi-spectral high-resolution optical observations over global terrestrial surfaces. The key mission objectives for Sentinel-2 are: (1) To provide systematic global acquisitions of high-resolution multi-spectral imagery with a high revisit frequency, (2) to provide enhanced continuity of multi-spectral imagery provided by the SPOT series of satellites, and (3) to provide observations for the next generation of operational products such as land-cover maps, land change detection maps, and geophysical variables. Consequently, Sentinel-2 will directly contribute to the Land Monitoring, Emergency Response, and Security services. The corresponding user requirements have driven the design towards a dependable multi-spectral Earth-observation system featuring the Multispectral Instrument with 13 spectral bands spanning from the visible and the near infrared to the short wave infrared. The spatial resolution varies from 10 m to 60 m depending on the spectral band with a 290 km field of view. This unique combination of high spatial resolution, wide field of view and large spectral coverage will represent a major step forward compared to current multi-spectral missions. The mission foresees a series of satellites, each having a 7.25-year lifetime over a 20-year period starting with the launch of Sentinel-2A foreseen in 2014. During full operations two identical satellites will be maintained in the same orbit with a phase delay of 180° providing a revisit time of five days at the equator. This presentation will concentrate on the development status of the two satellite flight models and on further plans to prepare for the launch and in orbit commissioning phase of the first satellite.