The Joint Agency Satellite Division (JASD) is an organization within NASA’s Science Mission Directorate with broad cross-cutting responsibilities. In partnership with the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), JASD manages the development and launch of reimbursable satellite programs, projects, and instruments.
NASA established the Joint Agency Satellite Division in April 2010, following the former Presidential Administration’s decision to replace the National Polar-Orbiting Environmental Satellite System (NPOESS) with the NOAA/NASA Joint Polar Satellite System (JPSS) and the DOD Defense Weather Satellite System (DWSS). JASD continues to build on NASA’s history of well-managed reimbursable partnerships with NOAA, including the Geostationary Operational Environmental Satellite (GOES) program, the Polar Orbiting Environmental Satellite (POES) program, and the Television Infrared Observation Satellite (TIROS) program. NOAA provides the requirements and budget, and NASA is responsible for the acquisition and development of the space systems, and, for specific programs, the ground systems, following NASA Science Mission Directorate’s rigorous flight program and project management processes.
Since its inception in 2010, JASD has consistently met its obligations to NOAA and the science community with the successful launches of Suomi National Polar-orbiting Partnership (S-NPP) in 2011, MetOp-B U.S. provided instruments in 2012, and the Total solar irradiance Calibration Transfer Experiment (TCTE) in 2013.
The Joint Polar Satellite System (JPSS) program will provide continuity of critical observations for accurate weather forecasting, reliable severe storm outlooks, and global measurements of atmospheric and oceanic conditions such as sea surface temperatures, ozone, and more. JPSS will also provide operational continuity of satellite-based observations and products for NOAA’s Polar-orbiting Operational Environmental Satellites (POES) and the Suomi National Polar-orbiting Partnership (S-NPP satellite). The program of record consists of an operational mission, S-NPP, and two planned missions, JPSS-1 and JPSS-2 along with the ground system for satellite command control and data acquisition, processing, and dissemination. Follow-on missions are being assessed in Polar Follow-On studies.
The Geostationary Observational Environmental Satellite-R (GOES-R) Series program consists of a system of environmental satellites in geostationary orbit that provide continuous weather imagery and monitoring of meteorological data for the United States, Latin America, much of Canada, and most of the Atlantic and Pacific ocean basins. The GOES-R Series satellites provide atmospheric, oceanic, climatic, and solar products supporting weather forecasting and warnings, climatologic analysis and prediction, ecosystems management, and safe and efficient public and private transportation. The GOES Series satellites also provides a platform for space environmental observations ,and auxiliary communications services that provide for GOES data rebroadcast, data collection platform relay, low resolution imagers, emergency weather communications , and satellite-aided search and rescue. The GOES-R Series program includes spacecraft, instruments, launch services, and all associated ground system elements and operations for four satellites (GOES-R/S/T/U).
The Reimbursable Projects Program (RPP) is an uncoupled portfolio of independent projects with unique mission specific objectives. Currently, the RPP consists of follow-on missions to operational weather and climate instruments and satellites whose purpose is to continuously observe the Sun and the Earth’s atmosphere and oceans. The RPP projects include: Polar Operational Environmental Satellite system (POES)/Meteorological Operational satellite program (MetOp), Joint Altimetry Satellite Oceanography Network (JASON)-3, Deep Space Climate Observatory (DSCOVR), and the Solar Irradiance, Data and Rescue (SIDAR) project.
The MetOp satellite series is the European contribution for the collaborative Initial Joint Polar Orbiting Operational Satellite System. It provides weather data services to monitor climate and improve weather forecasts worldwide. MetOp A is in orbit, MetOp B launched in September 2012, and MetOp C is planned to launch in 2018. The U.S. instrument contribution for MetOp C leverages off of the POES heritage instrument and includes the Space Environment Monitor (SEM), the Advanced Very High Resolution Radiometer (AVHRR), and the Advanced Microwave Sounding Unit (AMSU).
Jason-3 will provide continuity of ocean topography measurements beyond TOPEX/Poseidon, Jason-1, and Ocean Surface Topography Mission (OSTM)/Jason-2. It will provide detailed measurements of sea-levels on Earth to gain insight into ocean circulation and climate change. The U.S. instrument contribution for Jason-3 includes the Advanced Microwave Radiometer (AMR), the Laser Retroreflector Array (LRA), and the Global Positioning system Payload (GPSP). It is scheduled to launch in 2015.
DSCOVR, formerly called Triana, will provide early warning capability from a deep-space orbit located at the sun-earth L1 Lagrange point to detect space weather and harmful solar wind activity that could impact Earth. It has the secondary mission of serving as an Earth climate observatory by providing a unique continuous view of the “Earth at noon” via multi-spectral imaging and a full-disc irradiance measurement of the light reflected from the Earth’s surface. DSCOVR is planned to launch in 2015 on an Air Force provided SpaceX Falcon9 launch vehicle from Cape Canaveral Air Force Station.
SIDAR project (formerly Polar Free Flyer) consists of three instruments: Total and Spectral solar Irradiance Sensor (TSIS), Advanced Data Collection System (A-DCS), and the Search And Rescue Satellite Aided Tracking (SARSAT) system. TSIS will continue the 35-year record of total solar irradiance enabling scientists to understand the causes of climate change on our planet. TSIS is currently planned for flight aboard the International Space Station (ISS) in late 2017. The options for flying A-DCS and SARSAT are currently under assessment, with a nominal plan to fly as a secondary payload with the JPSS-2 launch vehicle planned for launch in 2019.