Friday, October 18, 2013

No. 791: Observation accuracy of a meteorological satellite grows higher (October 18, 2013)

Mitsubishi Electric will commercialize a meteorological satellite that takes clear color images of clouds toward 2019. The company plans to increase the image processing performance to more than 2,000 times higher than that of Himawari (Sunflower) that is the observation satellite operated by Japan Meteorological Agency. With such high image processing performance, the new meteorological satellite can cover a quarter of earth’s surface in one shot from the stationary orbit 36,000 km above the equator.

The Himawari currently takes monochrome images for every 30 minutes, while the new satellite can transmit more than 10 color images for every second. I will coordinate with the ground-based radar for faster warning of heavy rains and local flooding. It will also be helpful to monitor yellow sand that transport pollutants across the border and know the moves of a tsunami after earthquake. It will incorporate a new technology capable of compress and transmit a huge amount of image data to allow for knowing the weather condition almost in real time. The new observation satellite is expected to be 20-30 billion yen.    

The new meteorological satellite to be 
commercialized by Mitsubishi Electric toward 2019
As the above figure shows, the new satellite can (1) forecast the outbreak of localized heavy rain, (2) tell the route of a large typhoon, (3) monitor air contamination caused by yellow sand, (4) confirms the state of tsunami after earthquake, (5) discover suspicious vessels on the sea, and (6) give instructions to ships and airplanes for safty operation. 

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