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Program: Meteosat

Series of meteorological satellites operated by Eumetsat. The satellites observe cloud formation across the full Earth disk and generate images in 3 spectral bands every 30 minutes.

The 3 first satellites are experimental, the 3 next are operational: MOP (Meteosat OPerational). Then the program will use MTP (Meteosat Transition Program) and finally MSG (Meteosat Second Generation).

3 MSG satellites to be launched by Ariane in 2002, 2004 and 2008 by Ariane 5 Aerospatiale will build the 3 satellites. A fourth satellite (to garanty availability until 2015) was ordered from Alcatel Space in April 2003 (cost $135 million).

The MTG (Meteosat Third Generation) will be 3-axis stabilised and each satellite will have different payloads. The satellites will be of 2 types: for imaging (MTG-I, 4 satellites) and for sounding (MTG-S, 2 satellites). A total of 6 spacecrafts are planned. To be provided by Thales Alenia Space. Should span 30 years, first launch in 2018, now 2022. The MTG contract was awared to Thales Alenia Space; it's worth EUR 1.25 billion.

The payload proposed for MTG-I consists of the Flexible Combined Imager (FCI), Lightning Imager (LI), Data Collection System (DCS), and search and rescue (GEOSAR). Should be launched in 2019.
The payload proposed for MTG-S would have an Infrared Sounder (IRS) and Ultra-violet Visible Near-infrared (UVN) Sounder (same as in Sentinel 4).

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