Phytoplankton off of Ireland’s northwest coast

Date:18 July 2012 Tags:, , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

A spring bloom of phytoplankton is captured in this image off of Ireland’s northwest coast in the North Atlantic Ocean. In the lower-right corner, we can see part of County Mayo’s coast – which appears pink in the false-colour image. Broadhaven Bay, with its opening facing north, is also visible. Image credit: European Space Agency | CNES | Spot Image

Launched in 2002, the European Space Agency’s Envisat Earth observation satellite is the largest Earth observation spacecraft ever built. Envisat is now retiring after 10 magnificent years – double its planned mission lifetime.

In this wallpaper collection, we feature a very small sample of the formidably large collection of images captured by the eight-ton satellite – equipped with 10 sophisticated optical and radar instruments – in more than 50 000 orbits, together with images from ESA’s so-called “Third Party” missions. Envisat has contributed immeasurably to our knowledge of Earth, its weather patterns, oceans, atmosphere, environmental challenges and myriad other processes.