Northrop Coolers Picked for Japan’s Himawari Satellites

by





Redondo Beach, Calif.-based Northrop Grumman Aerospace Systems has been selected by ITT Space Systems to provide cryocoolers for sensor payloads the Rochester, N.Y.-based instrument house is building for a pair of Japanese geostationary-orbiting weather satellites.

The satellites, Himawari 8 and Himawari 9, are being built by Mitsubishi Electric Corp. of Tokyo for the Japan Meteorological Agency and are slated to launch in 2014 and 2016.

ITT was selected last year to provide instruments based on the Advanced Baseline Imager the company is building for the next-generation U.S. Geostationary Operational Environment Satellite-R system.

Northrop Grumman said in a Feb. 3 press release that the coolers it has been asked to supply are designed to keep the satellites’ infrared detectors and optics at cryogenic temperatures for more than eight years.

Mark Folkman, Northrop Grumman Aerospace Systems’ director of products and sensing, said the contract marks the third time the company’s cryocooler has been picked for an international weather or climate satellite.