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Amazing Launch Photos: Europe's MetOp-B Weather Satellite Blasts Off

Launch of MetOp-B Satellite

Roscosmos

Launch of the Soyuz-2.1a with Fregat upper stage and MetOp-B satellite from Baikonur Cosmodrome on September 17, 2012.

MetOp-B Launch

EUMETSAT

MetOp-B was launched today, 17 September, from Baikonur in Kazakhstan. The Soyuz rocket lifted off at 18:28 CEST. Carrying a suite of sophisticated instruments, MetOp-B will ensure the continuity of the weather and atmospheric monitoring service provided by its predecessor MetOp-A, which has been circling the globe from pole to pole, 14 times a day, since 2006.

MetOp-B Launch

EUMETSAT

MetOp-B was launched today, 17 September, from Baikonur in Kazakhstan. The Soyuz rocket lifted off at 18:28 CEST. Carrying a suite of sophisticated instruments, MetOp-B will ensure the continuity of the weather and atmospheric monitoring service provided by its predecessor MetOp-A, which has been circling the globe from pole to pole, 14 times a day, since 2006.

MetOp B Arrives in Baikonur for Testing

ESA

Following the safe arrival of the MetOp-B weather satellite in Kazakhstan, the sophisticated craft is now being carefully assembled and tested before launch. MetOp-B will provide essential data for weather forecasting and climate monitoring. Photo taken on March 10, 2012.

MetOp-B in Soyuz Fairing

ESA

The Soyuz fairing encapsulating MetOp-B. Photo taken on September 8, 2012.

MetOp-B Entering Rocket Fairing

ESA

Last view of MetOp-B as it is eased into the rocket fairing for launch on September 17, 2012.

MetOp-B mated to Fregat final stage

ESA

MetOp-B ready to be encapsulated in the Soyuz rocket fairing ahead of its launch on September 17, 2012.

MetOp-B Encapsulated

EUMETSAT

The MetOp-B satellite was successfully encapsulated in the fairing on Saturday, September 8, 2012.

Soyuz on the Launchpad with MetOp-B

ESA

Ahead of the MetOp-B launch on September 17, 2012, its Soyuz launcher is readied on the launchpad at Baikonur Cosmodrome, Kazakhstan. Photo taken September 14, 2012.

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