NOAA Selects GeoOptics and Spire for Commercial Weather Satellite Data Purchase
[Via Satellite 09-16-2016] The U.S. National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) has awarded GeoOptics and Spire data purchase contracts under its Commercial Weather Data Pilot program. This is the first time NOAA has contracted to purchase satellite weather data from commercial providers. Under this pilot program, the companies will provide Global Positioning System Radio Occultation (GPS-RO), a critical weather data type, to NOAA for evaluation. The data evaluation process is a necessary first step before any future procurement of commercially-provided weather data for operational use in NOAA’s weather forecast.
NOAA’s Commercial Weather Data Pilot was established earlier this year to “assess the potential viability of commercial weather data in [NOAA’s] weather modeling and forecasting.” The program is funded “to purchase, evaluate, and calibrate available data, which meets the standards and specifications set by NOAA in its Commercial Data Policy.”