The NOAA Satellite and Information Service makes fast access to data on the global environment from satellites and other sources available for monitoring and comprehending our dynamic Earth. They oversee the nation’s operating environmental satellites and provide data and information services like Earth system monitoring and authorized environmental assessments. NOAA has kept on hiring different businesses to enhance its technologies over the years.
Future geostationary weather satellite program definition contracts of $5 million each were awarded to Lockheed Martin and Maxar Space for the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. On July 26, NASA announced the NOAA-awarded contracts for the Geostationary Extended Observations (GeoXO) Spacecraft Phase A Study.
According to the agreements, each business will invest ten months in developing the GeoXO spacecraft model, advancing necessary technologies, and assisting in defining the spacecraft’s potential costs, performance, risks, and development timetable. The study’s findings will be used by NASA, NOAA, and other organizations to produce specifications for GeoXO satellite development contracts that will be given in 2024.
According to Lockheed Martin’s director of weather and Earth science, Adrián Cuadra, “We are tremendously excited regarding NASA and NOAA’s GeoXO program.” “It will expand on today’s technology and be a game changer for the long-term monitoring of the ocean, climate, and severe weather.”
The Geostationary Lightning Mapper and Solar Ultraviolet Imager are two satellites made by Lockheed Martin that are part of the current geostationary weather constellation, the Geostationary Operational Environmental Satellite (GOES) R Series. In addition, Cuadra said, “We are eager to continue our valued cooperation, focused on the purpose of saving lives because we know what it requires to achieve success..”
Maxar has also worked on NOAA weather satellites in the past. In the 1970s and 1990s, Maxar produced eight of NOAA’s first- and second-generation GOES satellites, according to Chris Johnson, who is the Maxar senior vice president and general manager (GM) of Space. “This GeoXO study deal is the next development of Maxar’s commitment to assisting customers in their utilization of spaceship and space-centered data to further attempts to research weather patterns and lessen climate change, Johnson continued.
NOAA intends to launch three GeoXO satellites in the early 2030s. Like the present GOES-R series, there would be two satellites over the western and eastern halves of the country, as well as a third over the middle. As opposed to the GOES-R Series, NOAA aims to achieve better imagery with the GeoXO constellation. Additionally, the organization plans to keep using GeoXO satellites to map lightning and monitor space weather.
An atmospheric composition sensor and the hyperspectral infrared sounder will be carried by the GeoXO spacecraft, which is placed in the middle of the constellation. The constellation will also fly ocean color instruments. The GeoXO mission is financed by, run by, and managed by NOAA. The selection of study contracts is handled by NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center.