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EUMETSAT and the dust cover of the first history eChapter selector GavaghanCommunications

Meteorology, Meteorological, History

An IGO
monit-
oring
weather and
climate
change

HISTORY OF EUMETSAT, p63.

HISTORY OF EUMETSAT, p61.


p62.

CHAPTER 6

METEOSAT SECOND GENERATION (MSG)


If the Meteosat Transition Programme (MTP) and development of the concept of Satellite Application Facilities (SAFs) taught EUMETSAT about ground segment design and operation, the Meteosat Second Generation (MSG) programme was the first in which EUMETSAT was involved from the earliest days in preparation for a satellite. At the beginning, when the Secretariat was small and the Organisation's administrative and budgetary arrangements did not lend themselves to the preparation of new programmes, EUMETSAT's involvement was peripheral. By the end of 1993, EUMETSAT had undergone an intensive process of maturation. In particular, the Organisation had settled on a strategy for its involvement in both ground and space segments. EUMETSAT, therefore, was able to reach a cooperative agreement with the European Space Agency (ESA) on the implementation of MSG that clearly showed how far the Organisation had evolved in the seven years since it first took legal responsibility for the Meteosat Operational Programme (MOP).

When EUMETSAT came into existence, ESA was already studying ideas for a follow-on mission to Meteosat. The Agency's studies were guided in those pre-EUMETSAT days by principles established in 1984 when the Agency brought scientists and meteorologists together in Avignon, France, to discuss the future of satellite meteorology in Europe.

The meeting in Avignon was essentially a brainstorming session during which participants decided to back the idea of a follow-on programme to Meteosat in preference to a polar orbiting satellite. It advocated a series of three satellites of advanced design carrying more and improved meteorological instruments plus a small scientific payload. The meteorological package, they argued, should include an improved imager to enhance very short-range weather forecasting whilst another two instruments could give temperature and humidity profiles of the atmosphere (sounders). Atmospheric sounding data were available at that time from polar orbit, but a number of European meteorologists were keen to receive a


SEE ALSO| |

1. Meteorologists shed political shackles, a review of Declan Murphy's history of the first 25 years of EUMETSAT (2011), by Helen Gavaghan.


2. An interview in 2010 with Dr Tillman Mohr, a special advisor to the secretary general of the World Meteorological Organisation, in Science, People & Politics.

eChapter| |TOP

Contents

Preface

Foreword

Introduction

Ch.1

Ch.2

Ch.3

Ch.4

Ch.5

Ch.6

Ch.7

Ch.8

The History of EUMETSAT is available in English and French from EUMETSAT©.
First printed 2001. ISBN 92-9110-040-4

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Eumetsat meteorology meteorological artificial satellites
European Space Agency weather climate policy politics history

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