As the electric power industry generates increasing amounts of renewable energy from intermittent sources such as wind and solar PV, the ability to nowcast radiance and wind velocity with km resolution up to 25 minutes in advance has become essential to balancing electricity demand and supply. This is the newest area where geospatial technology (wind at different altitudes, radiance, and temperature mapping) November 4 of this year NOAA and NASA will launch the GOES-R geostationary weather satellite which will provide support for nowcasting across the continental U.S..
GOES-R's Advanced Baseline Imager (ABI) will collect three times more data and provide four times better resolution and more than five times faster coverage than current GOES. The GOES-R series satellites will also carry the first lightning mapper flown from geostationary orbit. The Geostationary Lightning Mapper, or GLM, will map total lightning (in-cloud and cloud-to-ground) continuously over the Americas and adjacent ocean regions. GOES-R will provide coverage over a 1000x1000km box with a temporal resolution of 30 seconds, and spatial resolution of 0.5 to 2 km. It will completely scan the continental U.S. every 5 minutes, providing coverage of the 5000km (E/W) and 3000km (N/S) rectangle over the United States.
The Advanced Baseline Imager (ABI) supports a wide range of capabilities relating to weather nowcasting and climate monitoring including aerosol detection and measurement, including smoke and dust, clear sky masks, properties of clouds and moisture, downward shortwave radiation, fire/hot spot characterization, hurricane intensity estimation, land surface temperature, radiances, rainfall rate, reflected shortwave radiation, sea surface temperature, snow cover, total precipitable water, and volcanic ash properties.
GEOS-R enables “nowcasting” of severe storms across the continental United States. GOES-R will fly the first operational lightning mapper flown in geostationary orbit. It will cover land and oceans. Total lightning (in-cloud, cloud-to-cloud, and cloud-to-ground) information from GOES-R will increase lead time for severe storm warnings because it will make it possible to observe areas of severe weather every 30-60 seconds. This will enable more reliable warnings and evacuations.