GOES-16 to replace aging weather satellite’s spot

Source: NOAA
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By: Charles Roop | WCTV Eyewitness News
November 30, 2017

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (WCTV) — GOES-16, the satellite that was launched into space a year ago, will begin the move to its permanent “home” on Thursday.

The satellite, which launched as GOES-R in November 2016, will replace GOES-13 once the new satellite is moved to 13’s current spot at 75.2 degrees west longitude 22,000 miles above the Earth’s equator. The move means that the images from the bird that we’ve been able to show will not be available until the move has been completed and instrumentation checks out. The satellite is expected to be operational again as GOES-East on Dec. 20.

GOES-13, which was launched in 2006, will be turned off on Jan. 2, and moved into storage at 60 degrees west longitude.

The new Geostationary Operational Environmental Satellite has provided some higher definition imagery of this year’s Atlantic hurricane season while it was undergoing testing. Imagery included Hurricane Maria as it made landfall in Puerto Rico in September.

The imager on the satellite will be able to refresh as frequently as every 30 seconds, according to NOAA. The imager has three times the imagery channels, four times better resolution, and five times faster than the previous GOES satellites.

The faster, higher resolution data will lead to better observations. The better observations will help meteorologists make better forecasts.