The Geostationary Operational Environmental Satellite R-series (GOES-R) program is a key element of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) mission. This new series of satellites offers enhanced instrument technologies that have resulted in improved detection and observation of meteorological phenomena, including but not limited to: thunderstorms, hurricanes, low clouds and fog, wildfires and smoke, blowing dust, and volcanic eruptions and ash. The advancements provided by the GOES-R satellites allows the meteorological community to provide more accurate and timely forecasts and warnings along with more effective Impact-Based Decision Support Services (IDSS) for core partners. The first satellite in the GOES-R series, GOES-R, was launched on 11/19/16, becoming GOES-16, and eventually the operational GOES-East satellite on 12/18/17. The second satellite in the GOES-R series, GOES-S, launched on 3/1/2018, becoming GOES-17, and eventually the operational GOES-West satellite on 2/12/2019. GOES-T and GOES-U will launch in the early-to-mid 2020s, to round out the series.
The Joint Polar Satellite System (JPSS) program is the next generation of NOAA polar orbiting environmental satellites. Through a combined effort between NOAA and the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) spanning 40 years, the first next-generation satellite launched in October 2011: The NOAA/NASA Suomi National Polar-orbiting Partnership (SNPP). JPSS represents significant technological and scientific improvements in environmental monitoring and helps to advance weather, climate, environmental, and oceanic sciences. JPSS provides operational continuity of the existing NOAA Polar-orbiting Operational Environmental Satellites (POES) along with SNPP. NOAA is responsible for running and operating the JPSS program, while NASA is responsible for developing and building the JPSS spacecraft. JPSS-1 launched on 11/18/2017, becoming NOAA-20. JPSS-2 is scheduled to launch in early 2023.
This blog serves as a vehicle to demonstrate the current and future capabilities of these satellite programs. Blog posts focus on how satellite data were used (or could have been used) by NWS forecasters and other users to address specific forecast challenges. The “Satellite Liaison’s” who contribute to the blog represent the scientists who guide the NWS and other users on best practices for incorporating old, new, and future satellite imagery and products into forecast and warning operations.