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Europe's own satellite navigation system, Galileo, reached 1 billion smartphone users, on 10 September 2019, the same day of the 15th anniversary of the European Global Navigation Satellite Systems Agency (GSA), EU’s partner in operating Galileo.

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The month of August brought unprecedented heat waves all throughout Europe, Romania included. Using measurements made by the Copernicus EU Sentinel-3 satellite with its Sea and Land Surface Temperature instrument, it was possible to generate an accurate “heatwave map” for our country.

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Romanians are invited to name the exoplanet XO-1 b and the star it orbits, XO-1. The campaign is taking place within the framework of the 100th anniversary of the International Astronomical Union (IAU), with around 100 countries in the world participating. The call for suggesting names for these two objects reserved to Romania is open to everyone until 5 October 2019. The proposals can be submitted by an individual or a group (school class or astronomy club).

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Whilst best known for its surveys of the stars and mapping the Milky Way in three dimensions, ESA's Gaia mission has many more strings to its bow. Among them, it’s the contribution to our understanding of the asteroids that litter the Solar System. In 2019, the mission released an image showing the orbits of more than 14 000 known asteroids, among which a few new ones.

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Europe’s Ariane 6 launch vehicle is set to debut with a commercial mission in 2020 – industry is carrying out the final tests and starting production. The Ariane 6 launch zone at Europe’s Spaceport in French Guiana is near completion.

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