GOES Satellite Network

Geostationary Operational Environmental Satellites (GOES) is a collaborative NOAA and NASA program providing continuous imagery and data on atmospheric conditions and solar activity ( space weather ). NASA builds and launches the GOES and NOAA operates them.

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GOES Image Viewer

Since 1975, NOAA's Geostationary Operational Environmental Satellites (GOES) have provided continuous imagery and data on atmospheric conditions and solar activity (space weather). They have even aided in search and rescue of people in distress. GOES data products have led to more accurate and timely weather forecasts and better understanding of long-term climate conditions.

Mission Type

Earth Orbiter


Ongoing R Series Launches


Geostationary Orbit


Earth and Space Weather


GOES provide advanced imagery and atmospheric measurements of Earth’s Western Hemisphere, real-time mapping of lightning activity, and monitoring of solar activity and space weather. GOES satellites orbit 22,236 miles above Earth’s equator, at speeds equal to the Earth's rotation. This allows them to maintain their positions over specific geographic regions so they can provide continuous coverage of that area over time.




22,236 Miles


137.0 West (GOES 18)


75.2 West (GOES 16)

GOES West full disk image of the Earth half in day light and half in darkness.

GOES-R Series

NOAA’s most sophisticated Geostationary Operational Environmental Satellites (GOES), is known as the GOES-R Series, The GOES-R Series provides critical atmospheric, hydrologic, oceanic, climatic, solar and space data, significantly improving detection and observation of environmental phenomena that directly affect public safety, protection of property, and our nation’s economic health and prosperity.


GOES-16 Nov 2016


GOES-17 Mar 2018


GOES-18 Mar 2022


Next to Launch

The first satellite in the series, GOES-R, now known as GOES-16, was launched in 2016 and is currently operational as NOAA’s GOES East satellite. GOES-S, now known as GOES-17, was launched in 2018 and now serves as an on-orbit backup. GOES-T, now GOES-18, launched in 2022 and now serves as NOAA’s operational GOES West satellite. GOES satellites are designated with a letter prior to launch. Once a GOES satellite has successfully reached geostationary orbit, it is renamed with a number. GOES-U, the final satellite in the series, is scheduled to launch in 2024.

Together, GOES East and GOES West watch over more than half the globe — from the west coast of Africa to New Zealand and from near the Arctic Circle to the Antarctic Circle. 

Benefits Include:

  • Hurricane track and intensity forecasts
  • Early warning of severe storms and tornadoes
  • Fire detection, monitoring, and intensity estimation
  • Identification of lightning strikes most likely to ignite fires
  • Detection of low clouds and fog
  • Monitoring of atmospheric river events that can cause flooding and mudslides
  • Monitoring of smoke, dust and aerosols
  • Data for air quality warnings and alerts
  • Data for aviation route planning and reducing weather-related flight delays
  • Detection of volcanic eruptions and monitoring of ash and sulfur dioxide
  • Detection of heavy rainfall and flash flood risks.
  • Sea surface temperature data for monitoring fisheries and marine life
  • Monitoring of vegetative health
  • Data for long-term climate variability studies
  • Detection of meteors entering Earth’s atmosphere
  • Detection of coronal holes, solar flares, and coronal mass ejection source regions
  • Warning of space weather hazards responsible for communications and navigation disruptions and power blackouts
  • Monitoring of energetic particles responsible for radiation hazards

GOES U Spacecraft Development

Click any image to view a detail page with descriptions and the ability to view/download images in various resolutions (download icon in lower right on detail page).

GOES-U Solar Array Deployed

Launch Information

Next Launch: GOES-U (2024)

The next GOES Launch is for GOES-U scheduled for 2024. Watch this space for more information as the launch date is posted and the countdown begins.

Previous Launch: GOES-T (March 2022)

Curated GOES-T Launch Imagery

GOES-T was the most recent GOES-R Series satellite to launch. Once in orbit it was renamed GOES 18 and then moved into position to become GOES West, as part of the operational GOES Fleet. Click any image to view a detail page with descriptions and the ability to view/download images in various resolutions (download icon in lower right on detail page).

GOES-T Liftoff from SLC-41

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