January 22, 2018
Everybody talks about the weather, but Leonardo DRS is doing something about it.
Technology developed by the company’s Electro-Optical & Infrared Systems business for NOAA-20, the first of a new generation of advanced polar-orbiting meteorological satellites, is helping to improve the accuracy of weather forecasting. The satellite, launched in mid-November, circles Earth 14 times a day in a polar orbit.
As a result, forecasters gain unprecedented access to data needed for accurate predictions that save lives, protect property, and safeguard the nation’s economy, according to Rear Adm. Timothy Gallaudet, acting administrator of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Association.
Detector assemblies in a focal plane array supplied by Leonardo DRS view almost every point on the globe twice daily, enabling the satellite to generate a wide range of information about atmospheric temperatures, fields of humidity, and the nature and distribution of clouds. Such data is essential to predicting a hurricane’s path and recognizing climate patterns like El Nino and La Nina, which can influence weather over exceptionally broad areas.
“This year’s hurricane and fire seasons demonstrated just how critical earth-observing satellites are for forecasting extreme weather and hazardous events,” Gallaudet said.