NASA has selected United Launch Services LLC (ULS) of Centennial, Colorado, to provide launch services for the Joint Polar Satellite System-2 (JPSS-2) mission. Launch is currently targeted for 2021 on an Atlas V 401 rocket from Space Launch Complex 3E at Vandenberg Air Force Base in California.
The total cost for NASA to launch JPSS-2 is approximately $170.6 million, which includes the launch service and other mission-related costs.
JPSS is a collaborative program between NOAA and NASA. This interagency effort is the latest generation of NOAA polar-orbiting environmental weather satellites. JPSS-2 is one of five satellites that will comprise the JPSS constellation. These spacecraft gather global measurements of atmospheric, terrestrial and oceanic conditions, including sea and land surface temperatures, vegetation, clouds, rainfall, snow and ice cover, fire locations and smoke plumes, atmospheric temperature, water vapor and ozone. JPSS delivers key environmental observations that provide support for the nation's essential products and services. This includes forecasting severe weather such as hurricanes and tornadoes, predicting blizzards days in advance, and assessing other environmental hazards such as droughts, forest fires, poor air quality and harmful ocean conditions, particularly along the coasts. Further, JPSS will provide continuity of critical, global Earth observations — including our atmosphere, oceans and land.
NASA’s Launch Services Program at Kennedy Space Center in Florida will manage the ULS launch service. The JPSS Flight Project office is located at NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center in Greenbelt, Maryland, and manages spacecraft development for the agency’s Science Mission Directorate in partnership with NOAA in Washington, D.C.