Boeing Defense, Space & Security2009-03-05 08:05:01

Boeing Ships Next-Generation Weather Satellite GOES-O to Launch Site

Boeing and NASA announced today that the second of three next-generation Geostationary Operational Environmental Satellites (GOES) has shipped from Boeing's satellite manufacturing facility in El Segundo, Calif., to Cape Canaveral Air Force Station in Florida, where it will undergo final preparations for launch this spring.

The satellite, designated GOES-O, will be launched aboard a United Launch Alliance Delta IV vehicle procured through Boeing's commercial launch business, Boeing Launch Services.

GOES-O, a modified three-axis Boeing 601 spacecraft, will join the GOES-13 satellite (formerly called GOES-N) already in orbit. When operational, these satellites will help the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) provide more accurate locations of severe storms and other weather phenomena impacting the United States, resulting in more precise weather warnings to the public.

"This shipment represents another key milestone toward providing enhanced information and data services to NASA, NOAA, and weather scientists and forecasters worldwide," said Craig Cooning, vice president and general manager of Boeing Space and Intelligence Systems. "Throughout the years, Boeing has committed to providing best-of-industry systems, and we will rely on four decades of weather and Earth-observation satellite technology leadership to bring GOES-O through launch, rigorous on-orbit testing and, ultimately, reliable and beneficial service to NOAA for years to come."

GOES spacecraft operate as a two-satellite constellation in geosynchronous orbit above the equator and observe 60 percent of the Earth. Launched on May 24, 2006, GOES-13 is currently in a storage orbit position and later this year may replace one of two weather satellites that are nearing the end of their on-orbit lives. GOES-O will be launched as an additional back-up satellite. Designed for 10 years of service, each satellite will measure the Earth's atmosphere, its surface, cloud cover, and solar and geosynchronous space environment while providing a more stable platform for supporting improved imager, sounder and solar X-ray imager instruments. Upon completion and launch of the third satellite, GOES-P, Boeing will have built a total of eight spacecraft in the nation's GOES satellite series.

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