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The natural world. Looking pretty for 3.5b years.

Test Driving GEOS-16

Test Driving GEOS-16

Author: Hugh Bollinger/Thursday, April 27, 2017/Categories: natural history, video, space science, sustainability, environment, climate change

                                   Visible & Infrared North America, 4-25-17 (credit: GOES-16, NOAA/NASA)

Anyone believing Earth monitoring satellites don't provide utility or could be eliminated, should pay attention to NOAA's and NASA's Geostationary Operational Environmental Satellites (GOES-R) program. The program provides continuous satellite imagery and atmospheric measurements on lightning, storms, and space weather offering fundamental data for atmospheric, hydrologic, oceanic, climatic, solar, and space intrepretation. GOES-16, the newest member of the environmental monitoring group of satellites positioned over North America, has just observed a massive dust storm spreading from Mexico into the southwestern USA. An data animation shows the dust in pink, high-level clouds in blues, and low-level clouds in brown and greens.

GOES-16 was launched in Novemnber 2016 and is still being calibrated for peak performance. This image animation was developed from preliminary, non-operational data measurements. As climate change becomes more pronounced and severe weather more common, imagine the resource that will be available to improve weather forecasts after this 'test drive'. Predicting hazards and protecting infrastructure, homes, and lives is one of the beneficial results from this critical remotely-sensed environmental data.

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