Page last updated at 11:18 GMT, Friday, 30 October 2009

Water satellite set for lift-off

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A European satellite is set to provide major new insights into how water is cycled around the Earth.

The Smos spacecraft will make the first global maps of the amount of moisture held in soils and of the quantity of salts dissolved in the oceans.

Science correspondent Jonathan Amos explains how the satellite will work.

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