NASA Retires Its 11-year Old Ocean Monitoring Satellite Jason-2


After 11 years of successful research, NASA on Thursday, announced that it has ended its Ocean Surface Topography Mission. It retired its satellite Jason-2.

Written By Suchitra Karthikeyan | Mumbai | Updated On:

After 11 years of successful research, NASA on Thursday, announced that it has ended its Ocean Surface Topography Mission. NASA stated that the mission was ended after its satellite Jason-2 after detecting deterioration in the spacecraft's power system. The decision was made by NASA and its mission partners. Jason-2 was launched in 2008.

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What was Jason-2 mission?

As shared by NASA, the mission was a joint venture of the American Space agency and the French space agency - Centre National d'Etudes Spatiales (CNES), the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), and the European Organisation for the Exploitation of Meteorological Satellites (EUMETSAT). The mission was used to record sea surface height measurements. Jason-2 reportedly exceeded its three-year design life.

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What did Jason-2 achieve?

Addressing the media, Thomas Zurbuchen, NASA associate administrator, said, " Today we celebrate the end of this resoundingly successful international mission." Sharing the achievements of Jason-2, he said, "Jason-2/OSTM has provided a unique insight into ocean currents and sea-level rise with tangible benefits to marine forecasting, meteorology and our understanding of climate change." Jason-2 has reportedly charted nearly 2 inches (5 centimeters) of global sea level rise, a critical measure of climate change.

NASA states that Jason-2 has been instrumental for publication of more than 2,100 scientific papers. It also helped improve NOAA’s hurricane intensity forecasts and provided important observations of marine winds and waves. Jason-2 has brought high precision monitoring of ocean surface topography throughout its 11-year lifetime. These measurements are being continued by its successor, Jason-3, launched in 2016, states NASA.

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Future scope after Jason-2

Jason-2  had extended the precise climate record established by previous missions -TOPEX/Poseidon and continued by Jason-1The technological advancements proven on Jason-1, Jason-2/OSTM, and Jason-3 will be put to use well into future decades, states NASA. Following Jason-3  there will reportedly be two future Sentinel-6/Jason-CS satellites, planned for launch in 2020 and 2025. NASA will continue its mission to monitor the seas, predicting global climate change. 

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