A NASA spacecraft carrying a Raytheon Company climate and weather monitoring sensor has been shipped to Vandenberg Air Force Base, Calif., in preparation for launch. The NPOESS Preparatory Project (NPP) spacecraft was shipped from Ball Aerospace, which built, integrated and tested the spacecraft in Colorado.
Data provided by the Visible Infrared Imager Radiometer Suite, which will fly in a polar orbit aboard NASA’s NPOESS Preparatory Project spacecraft, will provide advanced forecasting imagery as part of the next-generation U.S. weather satellite system. Under contract to NASA, Raytheon is responsible for developing, deploying, operating and maintaining the Joint Polar Satellite System Common Ground System, which will support NPP as well as future JPSS spacecraft.
“VIIRS brings to bear the latest space-based environmental sensing technology to provide significantly improved weather and climate forecasting models,” said Bill Hart, vice president, Space Systems, for Raytheon’s Space and Airborne Systems business. “VIIRS combines the capabilities of several legacy operating systems into one technologically advanced instrument.”