Exelis has built an image sensor for a weather satellite the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration intends to launch in 2016, aiming to give forecasters new data every 30 seconds.
The payload for the Geostationary Operational Environmental Satellite-R is designed to capture images of the environment in order to help NOAA’s National Weather Service forecast and track severe weather, Exelis said Friday.
NOAA aims to reduce economic costs of natural disasters by $4.6 billion with new forecasting technologies and methods.
“Given the impacts of severe storms in terms of loss of life, property damage and effects on the economy, better forecasts aren’t just a goal but a necessity,” said Eric Webster, vice president of geospatial systems weather business unit at Exelis.
Webster said the new Advanced Baseline Imager sensor works to provide forecasters information on a storm’s makeup and to deliver pictures and other data five times faster than current systems.
Exelis says it has built every imager and sounder payload for NOAA’s GOES satellites since 1994.
NOAA intends for the GOES-R satellites to orbit about 22,300 miles above Earth while sending infrared and visible images of the Western Hemisphere to forecasters all day.