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METimage – Next-generation weather forecasts

20 September 2016

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METimage a new satellite instrument for weather and climate forecasting, is now entering its final phase. On 20 September 2016, the German Aerospace Center (Deutsches Zentrum für Luft- und Raumfahrt; DLR) and Airbus Defence and Space signed an agreement for the design, construction and testing of the radiometer.

METimage is a next-generation satellite instrument for meteorological applications. The multi-spectral imaging radiometer will gather important information on cloud cover, sea and land surface temperatures, as well as the distribution of water vapour in the atmosphere at unprecedented levels of accuracy, which will enable significantly more reliable weather and climate forecasts to be produced. The instrument detects sunlight reflected from Earth's surface, atmosphere and clouds in 20 spectral channels – from the visible to the infrared – collects environmental data, and has a resolution of around 500 metres per pixel. The instrument that is currently being used only uses six channels, and has a resolution of more than one kilometre per pixel.

METimage will be operational from 2021, at the same time as the new MetOp weather satellites of EPS-SG.

Source: DLR

Image credit: Airbus Defence and Space

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