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Report: UK planning own science satellite
Posted: Mon, Mar 24, 2003, 8:27 PM ET (0127 GMT)
Earthshine satellite (BBC) Great Britain is planning to build a earth sciences satellite independent of the European Space Agency, the BBC reported Monday. The Earthshine satellite would measure the amount of sunlight reflected by the Earth in an effort to measure the degree of influence solar variations has on climate change. The spacecraft would be stationed at the Earth-Sun L1 Lagrangian point, 1.5 million kilometers sunward of Earth. The spacecraft would be the first independent British space mission in two decades; project officials said they are doing this without international cooperation in order to allow the mission to be carried out faster. The spacecraft will be built by Astrium with funding from three UK government agencies. The total cost of the mission is estimated to be £16 million (US$25 million); it was unclear if this included launch costs, as the report made no mention of what vehicle would launch the spacecraft and when.
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