J23.6 MetNet: Development of a Small Weather Satellite Network Combining Limb and Nadir Observations

Tuesday, 9 January 2018: 9:45 AM
Room 9AB (ACC) (Austin, Texas)
John Fisher, Brandywine Photonics, Exton, PA; and D. Guerin, Z. Burns, J. Julian, L. L. Gordley, D. C. Fritts, M. Klein, R. Lachance, C. Fish, E. Stromberg, and P. McBride

Weather effects roughly one-third of the global economy, yet the US weather satellite systems providing data to Numerical Weather Prediction models are at risk to both technical malfunction (DMSP-19) and budget cuts (Polar Follow-On.) Data gaps can greatly hamper not only forecasts, but also data continuity of key atmospheric data records. Therefore, we have expanded upon a new systems architecture using low-cost constellations of Low Earth Orbit small satellites called MetNetTM. The advantage of a constellation is not only much lower cost, resiliency, and operational responsiveness (launch on demand), but also modularity (adding a “helper” satellite), and faster technology updates for better performance.

We shall provide the designs of candidate MetNetTM constellations including Space Weather Limb-Observing Satellite (SWeLS), MODIS-3U, the Compact Microwave Sounder (CMS), the Compact Infrared Sounder (CIS), a stellar occultation temperature retrieval CubeSat (T-STAR), Aerosols and Cloud Characterization Imaging Polarimeter & Oxygen A-line spectrometer (ACCIPO), and the MetNet Support SmallSat (MS3). The goal is to achieve similar or higher resolution measurements from current satellites such as JPSS and DMSP, but with shorter revisit times and multi-satellite cross-calibrations. Measurements include 3D wind speeds, temperature soundings, humidity, precipitation, sea surface temperature, cloud top temperature, aerosol size distributions, and atmospheric chemistry.

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