Having MetOp’s final three satellites in orbit will result in improved coverage of the earth and increased effectiveness of the satellites which will lead to an even more accurate weather forecasting as well as better climate monitoring. Already the current MetOp satellites provide a reduction of approximately 25 percent of the forecast error compared to other types of observations, satellite-borne as well as ground-based. This will now be further enhanced with MetOp-C.
Satellite instrument from RUAG Space
RUAG Space contributed its revolutionary satellite instrument GRAS (GNSS Receiver for Atmospheric Sounding) and antennas, the result of research and development work at its site in Gothenburg, Sweden.
GRAS collects real-time meteorological data globally, by assessing navigation signals from GPS/Galileo satellites. More specifically, it receives signals from different navigation satellites and calculates how much delay those signals have after passing through the atmosphere. This allows determining the current weather situation and generates a forecast.
Another instrument developed by RUAG Space is the MetOp scatterometer instrument. The scatterometer measures the reflection from small scale sea surface wave ripples, from which wind speed and direction can be deduced.
“We are excited to be substantial part of a programme that creates direct societal impact. From forecasting the weather to mastering natural hazards – MetOp is adding value. And it was the joint aim of all partners involved to further increase its precision with this new generation of satellites,” says Peter Guggenbach, CEO RUAG Space.
Heat protection for satellite
In addition to the Electronics products, the thermal insulation from RUAG Space protects the weather satellite MetOp-C from the extreme heat and cold in space.
Also, thanks to RUAG Space containers, the MetOp-C satellites will be transported safely to the European rocket launch centre in Kourou, French Guyana. MetOp-C is scheduled to launch on November 7. The first satellite, MetOp-A, was launched in 2006 and MetOp-B in 2012.
The European weather satellite organization EUMETSAT is an intergovernmental organisation with 30 member states in Europe. Their purpose is to supply weather and climate-related satellite data, images and products to the National Meteorological Services of the Member States in Europe, and other users worldwide.
RUAG Space is the leading supplier to the space industry in Europe, with a growing presence in the United States. With around 1,300 staff across six countries, it develops and manufactures products for satellites and launch vehicles – playing a key role both in the institutional and commercial space market. RUAG Space is a division of the international technology Group RUAG. RUAG develops and markets internationally sought-after technology applications in the fields of aerospace and defense for use on land, in the air and in space. 56 percent of RUAG’s products and services are destined for the civil market and 44% for the military market. The Group is headquartered in Bern (Switzerland). It has production sites in Switzerland and in 15 other countries in Europe, the United States and Asia-Pacific. RUAG generates sales of approximately CHF 1.96 billion and has over 9,200 employees – 400 of whom are trainees. Visit www.ruag.com.