[Source: NASA Aquarius Mission Home Page]
[10-Jun-11] Aquarius/SAC-D rocketed into space at 7:20:13 AM PDT. Less than 57 minutes later it separated from the rocket's second stage and began communicating with ground controllers and unfurling its solar arrays.
Aquarius is a focused satellite mission to measure global Sea Surface Salinity (SSS). Scientific progress is limited because conventional in situ SSS sampling is too sparse to give the global view of salinity variability that only a satellite can provide. Aquarius will resolve missing physical processes that link the water cycle, the climate, and the ocean.
For more information on AQUARIUS, see http://aquarius.nasa.gov/