Photos: Europe's GOCE Gravity-Mapping Satellite in Pictures

GOCE Reentry

Bill Chater

This photo of the GOCE satellite re-entering the atmosphere was taken from the Falkland Islands by Bill Chater on Nov. 11, 2013. [Read the Story Behind the Photo here]

Falling GOCE Satellite

ESA/AOES Medialab

An artist's illustration of the gravity and ocean mapping GOCE spacecraft in Earth orbit. The four-year-old spacecraft will fall to Earth in November 2013. [Read The Full Story Here]

GOCE Satellite in Orbit


An artist's interpretation of the GOCE satellite in orbit.

Final Testing of GOCE Satellite


Solar panel inspection during final testing of GOCE satellite at ESA-ESTEC. The spacecraft is equipped with four body-mounted and two wing-mounted solar panels. In orbit, the same side of the satellite remains facing the Sun.

GOCE Positioned Horizontally


The European Space Agency's GOCE is shown here positioned horizontally at test facilities in the Netherlands prior to its launch in 2009.

Geoid Model


ESA's GOCE mission has delivered the most accurate model of the 'geoid' ever produced. Red corresponds to points with higher gravity, and blue to points with lower gravity.

GOCE Satellite Over The Netherlands

Marco Langbroek/SatTrackCam Leiden station

A farewell photo of the European Space Agency's GOCE satellite was taken by avid satellite tracker, Marco Langbroek of Leiden, Netherlands. Due to its low altitude, the spacecraft zipped across the sky at high speed in deep evening twilight late last month.

European Gravity Probe Launches Into Space


ESA's GOCE gravity probe launched into orbit atop a Rockot booster from Russia's Plesetsk Cosmodrome on March 17, 2009.

GOCE - The Formula One of Spacecrafts

Gravity Field and Steady-State Ocean Circulation Explorer (GOCE): Mapping Earth's gravity field in unprecedented detail.

GOCE: Launch and Radio Acquisition

ESA's Gravity field and steady-state Ocean Circulation Explorer (GOCE) satellite was launched onto a near-Sun-synchronous, low Earth orbit on March 17, 2009

GOCE Satellite's Ion Thrusters

ESA/Mohammed Shafiq

View of the ion thrusters used on the European Space Agency's GOCE gravity mapping satellite.

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