June 22, 2018

World''s most sophisticated weather satellite to launch shortly

04 March 2018, 03:57 | Lorenzo Hawkins

Artist image of NOAA’s GOES-S satellite

Artist image of NOAA’s GOES-S satellite

United Launch Alliance's Atlas V rocket will launch the instrument from Space Launch Complex 41 - which first roared to life in December of 1965 for the launch of a Titan IIIC rocket for the U.S. Air Force.

The satellite, which will be named GOES-17 when it reaches orbit, will help provide faster and more accurate date on storm systems that threaten the western United States, according to NASA. Once the satellite becomes active later this year, it will read weather, wildfires, fog, storms, cyclones, and every other natural calamity that might hit the Western United States.

In addition to focusing on the western US, the satellite also will cover the eastern Pacific, eastern Australia and New Zealand, and much of South America once it finishes its testing phase and gets to its permanent location later this year, reported. The new GOES-S will be at a vantage point to help analyze California's wildfires in more detail, as well. "And we're also eagerly anticipating the increased coverage from GOES-S across the United States". The state-of-the-art satellite was able to spot wildfires in Texas and Oklahoma past year before emergency responders were even alerted.

Volz also hailed GOES-16's imagery as "really visceral" at an earlier news conference.

The primary customer for the data from the GOES satellites is the US Weather Service, but the information they beam to Earth is also shared openly with meteorologists around the world, NOAA said. It is expected that the satellite will receive more accurate information on storm disasters such as storms, hurricanes, floods.

And just viewing weather events in so much detail makes it easier to learn how they work.

If all goes well, the satellite will be released into a preliminary elliptical orbit three-and-a-half hours after launch. The same first-class service is now coming to the Pacific region. After about six months at that latitude preparing its instruments and running checks, it will move to its final vantage point over the eastern Pacific Ocean, taking on the official name GOES-West. Several other nations share weather satellite data with each other and NOAA to provide more complete coverage. The $10.8 billion cost includes the development, launch and operation of all four satellites as well as ground systems through 2036. The U.S. will soon have two of the most advanced weather satellites ever, operating in tandem. GOES-S is the second in the series of weather satellites.

Two more are planned in this four-satellite series: GOES-T in 2020 and GOES-U in 2024.

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