From Dirk (ESA), Finland, 20 December

Happy scientist before take off

I have been in Rovaniemi  in Finland since Sunday following the SnowSar campaign.

Rovaniemi is well known as the home of Father Christmas or Santa Claus – and you can really feel the spirit of Christmas across the entire city.

With this spirit giving us a good feeeling, we took off on Monday to collect images of snow using an airborne radar.

It is the first of a series of seven flights that will take place before March 2012. The aim is to gather information about temporal changes in the amount of water held in the snow.

It seems Santa has been on our side as everything worked well and we can go home providing the first set of high-quality airborne data for the development of ESA’s CoReH2O candidate mission.

Before going home to also celebrate Christmas, I will make sure to get the official Santa Claus stamp of Rovaniemi in my passport.

I wish you all a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year.