By Source (WP:NFCC#4), Fair use,

ESA’s Aeolus mission, which will use revolutionary laser technology to measure winds around the globe, is set for launch on 21 August from Europe’s Spaceport at Kourou in French Guiana. Media representatives are invited to the European Space Operations Centre (ESOC) in Darmstadt, Germany, to follow the launch of this latest Earth Explorer satellite.

This pioneering mission uses powerful laser technology that probes the lowermost 30 km of our atmosphere to yield vertical profiles of the wind and information on aerosols and clouds – a completely new approach to measuring the wind from space.

Although our daily weather forecasts include information about the wind, there is a lack of direct measurements. Scientists and meteorologists need accurate and timely wind data to understand systems that influence our weather and climate, and to improve forecasts. Aeolus is the first satellite to do just this.

Liftoff on a Vega rocket is scheduled for 21 August at 23:20 CEST (21:20 GMT).

For latest news and information on Aeolus, visit:

The Twitter hashtag to follow is #Aeolus


Follow the Aeolus launch live at ESA’s European Space Operations Centre
Starting at 22:00 CEST, the programme comprises short briefings about the scientific goals of this new wind mission, its sophisticated laser instrument and how the data will be used, as well as live updates from the teams in ESOC’s Main Control Room and from the launch pad in Kourou. Mission experts will be available for individual interviews.


Programme (all times are local time in Darmstadt (CEST))

20:30  Doors open

21:15   Q&A opportunity for media in ESOC’s Control Centre

22:00 Start of the event programme in ESOC’s Press Centre:

Welcome addresses from Head of ESA–ESOC and Director of Operations, Rolf Densing, and Head of ESA Earth Observation Projects, Philippe Goudy, followed by talks by mission and meteorological specialists

22:50  Live from Kourou

23:20 Aeolus lifts off (live transmission)

23:35 Break/light buffet

00:30 Coverage from Kourou resumes for acquisition of signal (AOS information is not conclusive…)

01:00 Programme ends



Please register for the event by filling out the following form by Friday, 17 August:




Robert-Bosch-Straße 5

64293 Darmstadt