The two large modules of the first GOES-R series satellites have been delivered to Lockheed Martin’s cleanroom near Denver, the United States. GOES-R, or the Geostationary Operational Environmental Satellite-R series, is the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s (NOAA) next-generation series of geostationary weather satellites.
With the delivery of the system module and the propulsion module, the weather satellite will now undergo the important integration and testing phase so that it can be available in late 2015 for a launch in early 2016.
“The arrival of the propulsion and systems modules in Denver represents a significant milestone for the programme. We are looking forward to the initial power up of the combined modules in a few weeks,” says Tim Gasparrini, Vice-President and Program Manager for the GOES-R series at Lockheed Martin.
The system module of the A2100-based satellite houses the three major electrical subsystems namely, command and data handling, communication, and electrical power. The propulsion module recently underwent integration of its engines, fuel tanks and various propulsion components at the company’s Space and Technology Center on NASA’s Stennis Space Center.
Once the system module and propulsion module are mated in July, the spacecraft will move onto the payload integration, functional testing and environmental testing phases of the programme.
Data from NOAA’s GOES satellites provides accurate real-time weather forecasts and early warning products to NOAA’s National Weather Service and other public and private sectors. The advanced spacecraft and instrument technology on the GOES-R series will, reportedly, vastly improve forecasting quality and timeliness, generating significant benefits to the United States and Western Hemisphere in the areas of public safety, severe weather monitoring, space weather prediction, ecosystems management, commerce and transportation.