(WMC) - In just one week, the nation will add a powerful new tool to its weather satellite fleet. On Nov. 10, NASA will launch the newest weather satellite into space.
The Joint Polar Satellite System-1, or JPSS-1, will provide scientists and meteorologists with vital data about a variety of weather-related extremes like hurricanes, floods, blizzards, and wildfires.
The satellite will also play a critical role in improving the accuracy of forecasts from three to seven days out. The Joint Polar Satellite System (JPSS) is the nation's new generation polar-orbiting operational environmental satellite system.
JPSS is a collaborative program between the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) and its acquisition agent, National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA). This inter-agency effort (JPSS) is the latest generation of U.S. polar-orbiting, non-geosynchronous environmental satellites.
JPSS-1 is a polar-orbiting satellite that will collect planet-wide measurements 14 times a day from 512 miles above Earth's surface. That kind of complete, global coverage, combined with critical observations from other weather satellites, like the GOES series, leads to more accurate forecasts.
As the backbone of the global observing system, satellites in the JPSS constellation gather global measurements of atmospheric, terrestrial and oceanic conditions, including sea and land surface temperatures, vegetation, clouds, rainfall, snow and ice cover, fire locations and smoke plumes, atmospheric temperature, water vapor, and ozone.
JPSS delivers key observations for the Nation's essential products and services, including forecasting severe weather like hurricanes, tornadoes and blizzards days in advance, and assessing environmental hazards such as droughts, forest fires, poor air quality and harmful coastal waters.
Having a clearer picture of your weather forecast not only helps you plan your weekend — it also helps meteorologists and emergency managers make important life-saving decisions about how to prepare their communities.