NOAA 2000-305
Contact: Pat Viets


A $9.6 million contract was awarded to AlliedSignal Technical Services Corporation, of Columbia, Md., the Commerce Department's National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration announced today. The contract is for engineering services in support of NOAA's environmental satellites.

The primary purpose of the contract is to provide engineering services to the NOAA Office of Satellite Operations in Suitland, Md., to support the safe and effective operation of NOAA's environmental satellites.

NOAA's environmental satellite system is composed of two types of satellites: geostationary operational environmental satellites (GOES) for national, regional, short-range warning and "now-casting;" and polar-orbiting environmental satellites (POES) for global, long-term forecasting. Both kinds of satellites are necessary for providing a complete global weather monitoring system. GOES satellites provide the kind of continuous monitoring necessary for intensive data analysis. They circle the Earth in a geosynchronous orbit, which means they orbit the equatorial plane of the Earth at a speed matching the Earth's rotation. This allows them to hover continuously over one position above the surface, thus monitoring the path of hurricanes.

Complementing the geostationary satellites are two polar-orbiting satellites. Constantly circling the Earth in sun-synchronous orbit, these satellites support large-scale, long-range forecasts and numerous secondary missions. The polar orbiters monitor the entire Earth, tracking atmospheric variables and providing atmospheric data and cloud images. The satellites provide visible and infrared radiometer data for imaging purposes, radiation measurements, and temperature and moisture profiles. The polar orbiters' ultraviolet sensors also measure ozone levels in the atmosphere and are able to detect the "ozone hole" over Antarctica from mid-September to mid-November.

The engineering support contract was awarded for an initial one-year period of performance with options to extend performance for three additional one-year periods. AlliedSignal Technical Services Corporation is a wholly owned subsidiary of Honeywell International, Inc.