Boeing Defense, Space & Security2006-05-25 20:35:53

Boeing Launches Next Generation Earth Observation Satellite for NASA/NOAA

The Boeing Company [NYSE: BA] announced today the successful launch of the first of three Boeing-built next-generation Geostationary Operational Environmental Satellites (GOES-N) for NASA and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA).

The Boeing Delta IV rocket lifted off from Space Launch Complex 37B at Cape Canaveral Air Force Station, Fla. yesterday at 6:11 p.m. EDT carrying the GOES-N meteorological satellite. Following a nominal four hour, 21-minute flight, the rocket deployed the spacecraft, and approximately 20 minutes later, controllers received the first signals from the satellite at a ground station in Diego Garcia.

"The successful launch and satellite acquisition of GOES-N represents the culmination of tremendous efforts and great work from our partners, NASA and NOAA," said Roger Krone, president of Boeing Network and Space Systems. "GOES-N will provide continuous real-time weather and environmental data that will aid in severe storm warnings, resource management and emergency search and rescue operations throughout the United States."

The multi-mission GOES series of satellites will provide NOAA and NASA scientists with data to support weather, solar and space operations, and will enable future science improvements with weather prediction and remote sensing. GOES-N also will provide data on global climate changes.

The Delta IV Medium+ (4,2) configuration launch vehicle uses a single Boeing common booster core with a Pratt & Whitney Rocketdyne RS-68 main engine, two Alliant Techsystems GEM 60 solid rocket motors, a Pratt & Whitney Rocketdyne RL10B-2 upper stage engine and a Boeing four-meter diameter upper stage and composite payload fairing.

The GOES-N spacecraft's design is based on the body-stabilized, three axis Boeing 601 satellite. Its primary sensors enable the satellite to "stare" at the Earth to continuously image clouds and monitor surface temperatures. GOES-N will track atmospheric phenomena, ensuring real-time coverage of dynamic events such as severe local storms and tropical hurricanes and cyclones.

Boeing designed and manufactured the 601 model geostationary satellite at its Satellite Development Center (SDC) in El Segundo, Calif. The SDC is the leading manufacturer of government and commercial communications satellites. Encompassing approximately 1 million square feet, the state-of-the-art facility is the largest dedicated satellite factory in the world.

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