Baikonur, Kazakhstan, 19 April 2006: The first MetOp meteorological satellite arrived at its launch site, the Baikonur Cosmodrome in Kazakhstan on April 18, following shipment from the industrial prime contractor, EADS Astrium in Toulouse, on board an Antonov-124 transport plane.
MetOp-A is the first in a series of three EUMETSAT Polar System (EPS) satellites developed by the European Space Agency (ESA) for EUMETSAT, the European Organisation for the Exploitation of Meteorological Satellites. The MetOp-A is scheduled for launch on July 17.
MetOp is the first polar orbiting satellite dedicated to operational meteorology. The MetOp satellite services have been designed to provide global weather data until 2020. MetOp, which will fly at a height of about 837 km, promises, with its 12 sophisticated instruments, to provide data of unprecedented accuracy, thus improving global weather forecasting and providing enhanced climate monitoring capabilities.