Slightly larger than a washing machine, the miniature Proba-V satellite was launched from French Guiana in the early hours of 7 May 2013.
The 'V' stands for 'vegetation': the satellite was designed to provide a clear picture of the world’s plants so their health can be easily monitored. This information can also be used for day-by-day tracking of extreme weather, alerting authorities to crop failures, monitoring inland water resources and tracing the steady spread of deserts and deforestation.
Proba-V is continuing the results from the long-established Vegetation sensor carried on the French Spot-4 and Spot-5 satellites.
After a one-year overlap with Spot-5, Proba-V is set to take over the task of mapping land cover and vegetation growth on a global scale.