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What is the Science Behind JPSS?
Information about our planet is vital for the ability to plan, predict, respond and protect our Nation’s lives and property. JPSS Science is critical to accomplishing this primary goal.

The Joint Polar Satellite System (JPSS) Science Goals include:

  • Producing and delivering new satellite data, imagery and products to increase the accuracy and reliability of weather forecasting capabilities for severe weather events and phenomena— such as tropical cyclones— i.e., Hurricane Sandy in 2012;
  • Improving our Earth’s ocean and coastal applications’ use of polar-orbiting satellite data;
  • Continuing the enhancement of our long-term environmental data sets to facilitate long-term climate monitoring and prediction; and
  • Developing our land applications

Most important, the JPSS Science goals directly support NOAA’s mission to secure a more ‘Weather Ready Nation.’ As a result, JPSS Science aligns with the overall focus of the JPSS Program, which is to utilize polar-orbiting satellite data products to feed NOAA's National Weather Service's (NWS) Numerical Weather Prediction (NWP) models. These NWP models help National Weather Service (NWS) forecasters more accurately predict severe weather phenomena in longer periods of time, thus providing advanced notice and warnings to the public-at-large, emergency makers and political leaders. It is critical that the JPSS Science directly supports the overarching JPSS Program mission, because the ‘science ‘ behind JPSS is implemented in the following ‘JPSS Science Process ‘ steps: (1) Algorithm Development; (2) Operational Usage; (3) Applications and Exploitation; (4 ) Research on Algorithm Enhancements; (5) JPSS User Community and Proving Ground.


The goal of weather prediction is to provide information people and organizations can use to reduce weather-related losses and enhance societal benefits, including protection of life and property, public health and safety, and support of economic prosperity and quality of life. -Board on Atmospheric Sciences and Climate Committee on Progress and Priorities of U.S. Weather Research and Research-to-Operations Activities - 2010

Our Nation’s system of polar-orbiting environmental satellites is vitally important and essential for supporting operational weather, climate research and storm forecasting for civilian, military and international counterpart, such as one of JPSS’s key international partners—The European Organisation for the Exploitation of Meteorological Satellites (EUMETSAT).

EUMETSAT's main purpose is to deliver weather and climate-related satellite data, images and products— 24 hours a day, 365 days a year.


JPSS Science and capabilities