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European organization for the use of meteorological satellites

Organization logo

Headquarters in Darmstadt
English name European Organization for the Exploitation of Meteorological Satellites
French name l'Organisation européenne pour l'exploitation des satellites météorologiques
Organization type Space agency
Seat of the organs Darmstadt
Chair A. Eliassen
Member States 30 :
Official and working languages

English France


  • Member States
  • cooperating countries
  • The EUMETSAT ( Eu ropean Organization for the Exploitation of Met eorological satellite ellites ; German: " European Organization for the Exploitation of Meteorological Satellites ") in Darmstadt operates the Meteosat - and MetOp -Wettersatelliten.

    It is an intergovernmental organization based in Darmstadt , Germany , with currently 30 European member states ( Belgium , Bulgaria , Denmark , Germany, Estonia , Finland , France , Greece , Ireland , Iceland , Italy , Croatia , Latvia , Lithuania , Luxembourg , the Netherlands , Norway , Austria , Poland , Portugal , Romania , Sweden , Switzerland , Slovakia , Slovenia , Spain , Czech Republic , Turkey , Hungary and the United Kingdom ).

    EUMETSAT is a member of the Coordination Group for Meteorological Satellites (CGMS) and provides its secretariat. EUMETSAT is an observing member of the CCSDS .


    EUMETSAT control room in Darmstadt

    The satellite images provided form the basis for weather observation and forecasting. Long-term measurements, for example on climate change or global warming, can be collected.


    EUMETSAT currently operates a fleet of four geosynchronous weather satellites called Meteosat . From positions at 0 ° to 41.5 ° east longitude , the satellites monitor the weather in Europe, Africa and parts of Asia. It is a second, technically improved satellite generation (MSG - Meteosat Second Generation ) that went into operation between 2004 and 2018. The first Meteosat generation came from the 1970s to 1990s; the last of these older satellites - Meteosat-7 - was shut down in 2017.

    EUMETSAT Polar System (EPS)

    To complete the global overview, EUMETSAT is currently operating the first two of three polar orbiting satellites ( MetOp ). They are developed in cooperation with the European Space Agency (ESA), the French space agency CNES and European industry. The first MetOp satellite was launched on October 19, 2006. Earth observations of polar orbits are carried out jointly by EUMETSAT and the US weather service NOAA as part of the Initial Joint Polar System (IJPS). The IJPS includes the exchange of instruments and data as well as mutual support in receiving satellite data.

    The first satellites in the IJPS are NOAA-18 and MetOp-A . NOAA-19 was launched on February 6, 2009, and began routine operations in May of the same year, replacing NOAA-18. A Microwave Humidity Sounder (MHS) instrument from EUMETSAT is on board NOAA-19.

    MetOp-B was successfully launched on September 17, 2012 at 6:28 p.m. CEST (10:28 p.m. local time). The launch took place from the Baikonur Cosmodrome in Kazakhstan with a Soyuz 2.1a rocket. The last satellite in the MetOp series (MetOp-C) was launched on November 7, 2018 with a Soyuz rocket from Kourou in French Guiana.


    Since 70% of the earth's surface is covered by oceans and ocean currents and phenomena such as El Niño play an important role in global climate development, another Jason-2 satellite was sent into space on June 20, 2008 . He will continuously observe sea and wave heights and thus support sea weather forecasts. EUMETSAT and NOAA will take control of this satellite as well as the distribution of the collected data.

    In order to be able to offer this service in the future, EUMETSAT, ESA , NOAA and other European partners have agreed to plan the next generation of geostationary and polar satellites.


    In May 2019 it was announced that EUMETSAT and JAXA would cooperate for future measurements of greenhouse gases (via the GOSAT satellite ).

    Use of the data

    The data and weather images are primarily intended to be used by the national weather services of the member states and cooperating countries. In addition, a number of other users have acquired licenses to access the Meteosat data.

    The main users disseminate weather images and data to other end users. For example, the weather images and films, together with weather forecasts, are broadcast day by day on television or offered on the Internet. A large part of the European population uses EUMETSAT data.

    Some universities and research institutes require Meteosat data for further education and their own research. Commercial organizations use the data either as end users, such as airlines, or as service providers, such as television stations or commercial weather forecasts. Meteosat data are often received by locally installed receiving devices, such as those found at schools, sports airports, yachts or at private individuals.

    Satellite Application Facilities (SAFs)

    EUMETSAT's Satellite Application Facilities (SAFs) are an integral part of the distributed EUMETSAT ground segment. SAFs use the experience and expertise of the member states and are responsible for the application-related processing of satellite data. Each SAF is developed and operated by an international consortium under the direction of a national weather service. Research, data, products and services of the SAFs complement the activities of the EUMETSAT central facility in Darmstadt.

    There are currently eight SAFs in different stages of development, specializing in the following areas:

    Member states

    Country status accession Financing share
    (as of 2013)
    National weather service website
    GermanyGermany Germany member March 1986 19.20% German Weather Service (DWD)
    United KingdomUnited Kingdom United Kingdom member March 1986 15.62% Met Office
    FranceFrance France member February 1986 14.70% Météo-France
    ItalyItaly Italy member June 1986 12.04% Servizio Meteorologico dell'Aeronautica Militare
    SpainSpain Spain member February 1986 7.56% Agencia Estatal de Meteorología
    NetherlandsNetherlands Netherlands member March 1986 4.38% Koninklijk Nederlands Meteorological Instituut
    SwitzerlandSwitzerland Switzerland member July 1986 2.75% MeteoSwiss / MétéoSuisse / MeteoSvizzera
    BelgiumBelgium Belgium member October 1986 2.57% Het Koninklijk Meteorologische Instituut van België / Institut Royal Météorologique de Belgique
    SwedenSweden Sweden member January 1986 2.53% Sveriges meteorologiska och hydrologiska institut (SMHI)
    TurkeyTurkey Turkey member August 1986 2.27% Meteoroloji Genel Müdürlüğü
    AustriaAustria Austria member December 1993 2.05% Central Institute for Meteorology and Geodynamics
    NorwayNorway Norway member April 1986 2.03% Norske Meteorologisk Institutt (
    PolandPoland Poland member June 2009 1.95% Instytut Meteorologii i Gospodarki Wodnej (IMGW)
    DenmarkDenmark Denmark member January 1986 1.78% Danmarks Meteorologiske Institut (DMI)
    GreeceGreece Greece member June 1988 1.65% Εθνική Μετεωρολογική Υπηρεσία (HNMS)
    FinlandFinland Finland member December 1986 1.35% Ilmatieteen laitos / Meteorologiska institutet (FMI)
    PortugalPortugal Portugal member May 1989 1.23% Instituto de Meteorologia (IM)
    IrelandIreland Ireland member June 1986 1.17% Met Éireann
    Czech RepublicCzech Republic Czech Republic member May 2010 0.80% Český hydrometeorologický ústav (CHMI), Družicové Oddělení
    HungaryHungary Hungary member October 2008 0.69% Országos Meteorológiai Szolgálat (OMSZ)
    RomaniaRomania Romania member November 2010 0.57% National Meteorological Administration of Romania
    SlovakiaSlovakia Slovakia member January 2006 0.32% Slovenský hydrometeorologický ústav (SHMU)
    CroatiaCroatia Croatia member December 2006 0.25% Državni hidrometeorološki zavod (DHMZ)
    SloveniaSlovenia Slovenia member February 2008 0.23% Agencija Republike Slovenije za Okolje (ARSO)
    LuxembourgLuxembourg Luxembourg member July 2002 0.21% Administration of the navigation aérienne
    BulgariaBulgaria Bulgaria member April 2014 0.18% Национален институт по метеорология и хидрология (INMH)
    LithuaniaLithuania Lithuania member January 2013 0.16% Lietuvos hidrometeorologijos tarnyba (LHS), prie Aplinkos ministerijos
    LatviaLatvia Latvia member May 2009 0.10% Latvijas Vides, ģeoloģijas un meteoroloģijas aģentūra (LVGMA)
    IcelandIceland Iceland member January 2014 0.10% Veðurstofa Íslands
    EstoniaEstonia Estonia member June 2013 0.09% Keskkonnaagentuur (KAUR)

    See also

    Web links

    Commons : EUMETSAT  - collection of images, videos and audio files

    Individual evidence

    2. ^ Meteosat on the Eumetsat website, accessed October 7, 2019.
    3. Monitor greenhouse gases from space. In: . May 15, 2019, accessed May 19, 2019 .
    4. Homepage Support to Nowcasting and very short range forecast
    5. Homepage Ocean and Sea Ice
    6. Homepage Climate Monitoring
    7. Homepage Numerical Weather Prediction ( Memento from August 10, 2007 in the Internet Archive )
    8. Homepage Land Surface Analysis
    9. Homepage Radio Occultation Meteorology
    10. Homepage Atmospheric Composition Monitoring
    11. Homepage Hydrology and Water Management
    12. EUMETSAT Member States. Retrieved January 8, 2019 (English): "Currently a total of 30 Member States are a part of EUMETSAT, and the organization continues to grow."

    Coordinates: 49 ° 51 ′ 54 ″  N , 8 ° 37 ′ 37 ″  E