Northrop Grumman is now clear to build its Advanced Technology Microwave Sounder which will be used to collect valuable data about the Earth’s climate as part of the National Polar-orbiting Operational Environmental Satellite System (NPOESS) commissioned by the US.

The environmental satellite will provide the US with operational weather and climate monitoring capability for military and civilian usage through to 2025.

The microwave sounder will provide microwave data between 23 and 183GHz across 22 channels, including atmospheric temperature and moisture profiles to aid NPOESS in weather forecasting.

The ATMS is the second flight model that will be integrated into the first NPOESS satellite, following the first ATMS fitted to the NPOESS Preparatory Project satellite in 2005.

The first NPOESS satellite is scheduled for flight in 2014 after NPP satellite launch in 2011.