Minimize What is SMOS?
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ESA's Soil Moisture Ocean Salinity (SMOS) Earth Explorer mission is a radio telescope in orbit, but pointing back to Earth not space. 

Its Microwave Imaging Radiometer using Aperture Synthesis (MIRAS) radiometer picks up faint microwave emissions from Earth's surface to map levels of soil moisture, sea surface salinity, sea ice thickness and others geophysical variable such as wind speed over ocean and freeze / thaw soil state.

Read more about this mission in the SMOS multimedia book.

Minimize Latest Mission Operations News
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New maps of salinity reveal the impact of climate variability on oceans

30 November 2019

Since the saltiness of ocean surface waters is a key variable in the climate system, understanding how this changes is important to understanding climate change. 

SMOS, ERS, Envisat data collections maintenance - 30 October 2019

29 October 2019

Due to a software maintenance on Wednesday 30 October, the following downtimes are scheduled:

  • ERS and Envisat dissemination service: from 09:00 to 11:00 CET
  • SMOS data dissemination service: from 11:00 to 13:00 CET.

Special event for 10th anniversary of SMOS

21 October 2019

Next month marks the 10th anniversary of the SMOS mission, which was launched on 2 November 2009. To celebrate the occasion, ESA is organising a symposium "Earth Explorers for Climate - The contribution from SMOS" which will take place at the Eden Project in Cornwall, UK, from 18 to 20 March 2020.

Minimize Latest Mission Results News
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New maps of salinity reveal the impact of climate variability on oceans

30 November 2019

Since the saltiness of ocean surface waters is a key variable in the climate system, understanding how this changes is important to understanding climate change. 

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Space is key to monitoring ocean acidification

28 November 2019

This week, the UN World Meteorological Organization announced that concentrations of greenhouse gases in the atmosphere have reached yet another high. This ongoing trend is not only heating up the planet, but also affecting the chemical composition of our oceans. Until recently, it has been difficult to monitor 'ocean acidification', but scientists are exploring new ways to combine information from different sources, including from ESA's SMOS mission, to shed new light on this major environmental concern.

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Revealing interior temperature of Antarctic ice sheet

04 November 2019

As ESA's SMOS satellite celebrates 10 years in orbit, yet another result has been added to its list of successes. This remarkable satellite mission has shown that it can be used to measure how the temperature of the Antarctic ice sheet changes with depth – and it's much warmer deep down.

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SMOS 10 years in orbit

31 October 2019

SMOS has been in orbit for a decade. This remarkable satellite has not only exceeded its planned life in orbit, but also surpassed its original scientific goals.