GOES mast


Objectives: The GOES system is a basic element of US weather monitoring and forecast operations and is a key component of the NWS (National Weather Service) modernization program. Spacecraft and ground-based systems work together to accomplish the GOES mission of providing weather imagery and quantitative sounding data for weather forecasting and related services. The new series of GOES satellites provides significant improvements over the previous GOES system in weather imagery and atmospheric sounding information.

Description: The spacecraft derives from Space System/Loral's communcations satellites, providing a 3-axis stabilized design. The main body of the spacecraft is a 2-meter cube, with a deployed length of 27 meters. The spacecraft weighs 4600 pounds. The GOES-9 system performs the same basic functions as GOES-8B though many small improvements were made to GOES-9 to correct problems discovered during the construction, launch and operation of GOES-8. The Earth sensors on GOES-9 are less sensitive to sunglight, and thus produce better images. The GOES-9 spacecraft is operational as GOES-WEST at 135W.

Participants: NASA, NOAA, Space Systems/Loral, ITT, General Dynamics Space Systems Division

Launch Date
May 23, 1995

Operational Period
Deactivated in August, 1998, due to failing bearings in the momentuum wheels.

Launch Vehicle

Launch Site
Cape Canaveral, FL

Weather Satellite

GOES missions

1968 - 1977 1978 - 1987 1988 - 1997

Earth Science Enterprise


Responsible NASA Official: Sharron Sample
Curator: SAIC Information Services
Date: 4/22/99