The part of Earth’s atmosphere with high concentrations of ozone gas is known as the ‘ozone layer’, and protects life on Earth from ultraviolet radiation.
However, pollutants can break down ozone, causing thinning of the layer and the infamous ozone hole.
The depletion of ozone in our atmosphere and subsequent increase in ultraviolet exposure causes skin cancer, cataracts and immune system damage in humans, and injures animals, plants and even microscopic phytoplankton.
With a swath width of 2600 km, Sentinel-5P’s Tropomi instrument will map global ozone on a daily bases and contribute to the Copernicus Atmosphere Monitoring Service to support public policies related to ozone monitoring and public health.
For example, information from Sentinel-5P will be used for daily forecasts of ultraviolet radiation and support public warning systems, so that people in a certain area may choose to stay indoors on days when ozone concentration is particularly low.
Additionally, Sentinel-5P will ensure the continuation of ozone data for long-term climate and atmosphere monitoring.