Russell Katz: Lockheed’s Lightning Mapper Sensor to Support NOAA Weather Services

Lockheed Martin BlueLockheed Martin has completed the Geostationary Lightning Mapper for the first Geostationary Operational Environmental Satellite that will support the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration‘s weather services and meteorological research work.

The company said Wednesday the GLM sensor works as an early-warning instrument for severe storm such as tornadoes and will fly on the GOES-R spacecraft, which is scheduled to launch early in 2016.

Russell Katz, Lockheed’s GLM deputy program manager, said the instrument will work to monitor lightning to detect and study severe weather conditions.

“A rapid increase of in-cloud lightning can precede severe weather on the ground. Changes in that type of lightning can also give us a better understanding of the updraft strength in thunderstorms.”

GLM is built to leverage technologies such as the Lightning Imaging Sensor and pixel imaging as GOES-R operates from geostationary Earth orbit to observe atmospheric conditions over the U.S. and Western Hemisphere, Lockheed said.

NOAA manages the GOES program, while the Goddard Space Flight Center oversees the development of GLM.

Lockheed will integrate the sensor with the first GOES-R at its facility in Colorado.

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