Ratified collaboration strengthens weather satellite research

February 19, 1999 | Mike Key

Four major research organizations are pooling their unique scientific and engineering expertise for new gains in the field of atmospheric research. A new Memorandum of Agreement confirms the long association of NASA’s Langley Research Center (LaRC) and Goddard Space Flight Center (GSFC) with NOAA’s National Environmental Satellite Data and Information Service (NESDIS) and the University of Wisconsin’s Space Science and Engineering Center (SSEC), through the Cooperative Institute for Meteorological Satellite Studies (CIMSS), located in Madison, Wisconsin. The research centers share a common interest in developing advanced weather satellite and remote sensing systems for atmospheric research and weather forecasting. They emphasize new instrument technologies and their application by developing products retrieved from weather satellites flying in orbits that are polar (at about 900 miles above the earth) and geostationary (stationed at about 22,000 miles above the equator).

Joint programs between the groups include the design of imaging and sounding systems intended to advance operational weather forecasting and to investigate potential applications of geostationary satellite data on climate and atmospheric chemistry. Cooperative studies include comparing passive visible and infrared radiation measurements with active laser LIDAR measurements to study the affect of clouds and aerosols on the earth’s climate. The groups also jointly perform science and engineering studies and conduct airborne measurement programs to support the development of operational instruments and associated data processing techniques for the next generation National Polar-orbiting Operational Satellite System (NPOESS). The agreement fosters scientist exchange and the development of new initiatives made possible through the combination of talents that each organization offers.

For more information on the research groups and their research, follow the links below.