EL SEGUNDO, Calif. – Raytheon has received a contract from NASA to develop a Visible Infrared Imager Radiometer Suite for the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s Joint Polar Satellite System-2 spacecraft. This is the third VIIRS unit Raytheon has been contracted to build.
JPSS is a joint program of NOAA and NASA that provides critical observations to improve the accuracy of weather forecasting. Raytheon built the first VIIRS instrument for the JPSS-precursor Suomi NPP spacecraft, which was successfully launched into orbit in October 2011, and is building a second unit for the first JPSS spacecraft.
“The meteorology community has expressed overwhelmingly positive feedback for the data VIIRS provides,” said Bill Hart, vice president of Space Systems for Raytheon’s Space and Airborne Systems business. “VIIRS has set new benchmarks in low light imagery and shown itself to be an indispensable tool in developing highly accurate, timely forecasts that are used to protect life and property during major weather events.”
VIIRS collects imagery in 22 spectral bands, allowing scientists to understand global weather and climate patterns in greater detail than ever before. Flying on the JPSS family of satellites, VIIRS will maintain the continuity of critical data records established with predecessor instruments such as the Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer and the Sea-viewing Wide Field-of-view Sensor, also developed by Raytheon.
Construction of the JPSS-1 VIIRS instrument continues on track for delivery in 2014.