European satellite plunges back to Earth in first-of-its-kind assisted re-entry

AI summary: The European Space Agency (ESA) has successfully guided its Aeolus satellite to a controlled re-entry into Earth’s atmosphere, demonstrating a new method of post-mission disposal. The move is part of ESA’s commitment to tackling space debris and ensuring the safety of re-entry. Future ESA satellites will be designed for targeted re-entry, either burning up from aerodynamic heating or being steered towards a specific ocean patch. The Aeolus satellite, which measured wind speeds globally, was in operation for five years before its mission ended in April.
Read more at Ars Technica…

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