Picasso, from the Belgian Institute for Space Aeronomy (BIRA) will map the distribution of ozone across the Earth’s stratosphere using the light filtering across the planet’s atmosphere during sunrise and sunset.
Simba, by the Royal Meteorological Institute (IRM) will track climate change on Earth by measuring the balance of energy it receives from the Sun and the energy it loses to outer space.
The successful mission put 756 kilograms of space devices into orbit for a total of 21 customers from 13 countries, with the lightest satellite weighing 1 kilogram and the heaviest one up to 500 kilograms.
The launch on Wednesday evening was announced only a few hours before it happened, after it had been delayed several times amid the coronavirus pandemic and adverse weather conditions.
The De Vega rocket was airborne for less than two hours before mission operators on the ground declared the operation a success, De Morgen reports.
The rocket released the first seven microsatellites within the first hour of flight while the remaining 46 were shot into orbit in less than three minutes and about 1:42 hours after launch.