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Geostationary Operational Environmental Satellites

Project Description
GOES (Geostationary Operational Environmental Satellite)
provides weather imagery and quantitative sounding data used to
support weather forecasting, sever storm tracking, and meteorological
research. This is a reimbursable project for NOAA. NASA builds and
launches the satellites. NOAA operates the satellites post
commissioning and check-out period and uses the data in weather
forecasts, Disaster management, public health, and aviation safety.

GOES satellites provide the kind of continuous monitoring
necessary for intensive data analysis. They circle the Earth in
a geosynchronous orbit, which means they orbit the equatorial
plane of the Earth at a speed matching the Earth's
rotation. This allows them to hover continuously over one
position on the surface. The geosynchronous plane is about
35,800 km (22,300 miles) above the Earth, high enough to allow
the satellites a full-disc view of the Earth. Because they stay
above a fixed spot on the surface, they provide a constant vigil
for the atmospheric &triggers& for severe weather conditions
such as tornadoes, flash floods, hail storms, and
hurricanes. When these conditions develop the GOES satellites
are able to monitor storm development and track their movements.

For more information on GOES, see
http://goes.gsfc.nasa.gov/ and
http://www.oso.noaa.gov/goes/
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