User preparations for the next generation of meteorological satellites (GEO and LEO)

The new generation of meteorological geostationary satellites being launched by NOAA, ISRO, JMA, CMA, KMA, ROSHYDROMET and EUMETSAT before the end of this decade will provide unprecedented capabilities for the key applications of severe weather monitoring, nowcasting and short range forecasting and for a number of developing application areas, but will also present unprecedented challenges for users worldwide. The main challenge is the order-of-magnitude increase in the amount of data and products to be generated from the advanced imagers and sounders onboard the satellites. In addition, novel data types from geostationary sounders and 16-channel imagers need to be accommodated for by operators and users. These capabilities will be driving the need to develop more advanced techniques for interpretation and assimilation of the data and products generated. It is a priority of the World Meteorological Organization (WMO) and the Coordination Group for Meteorological Satellites (CGMS) to support the user community in light of these challenges. Satellite data users and WMO members require timely, technical information on the new satellite generation to exploit its potential operational benefits and socio-economic value. The WMO Space Programme and the CGMS member agencies, is therefore together developing the online portal SATURN (SATellite User Readiness Navigator) to provide a single point of access for all information pertinent to the preparation of the global user community for the new generation of satellites. The initial scope of SATURN has been the new generation of GEO satellites, but it is planned to extend the scope of the portal to the core meteorological satellites in low-earth orbit. The full support of CGMS members to achieve this goal is essential. Therefore CGMS has established a task team to provide content for the SATURN portal, and members for this task team have been nominated by China Meteorological Administration, EUMETSAT, Japan Meteorological Agency, NOAA, Korea Meteorological Administration, India Meteorological Department, and ROSHYDROMET (Russia). The SATURN portal is hosted by the WMO Space Programme.

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