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Timeline

  • April 1, 1960 : TIROS-1 was launched from Cape Canaveral, FL. It was the first polar-orbiting weather satellite.
  • November 23, 1960 : TIROS-2 was launched from Cape Canaveral, FL.
  • July 12, 1961 : TIROS-3 was launched from Cape Canaveral, FL.
  • February 8, 1962 : TIROS-4 was launched from Cape Canaveral, FL.
  • June 19, 1962 : TIROS-5 was launched from Cape Canaveral, FL.
  • September 18, 1962 : TIROS-6 was launched from Cape Canaveral, FL.
  • June 19, 1963 : TIROS-7 was launched from Cape Canaveral, FL.
  • December 23, 1963 : TIROS-8 was launched from Cape Canaveral, FL.
  • January 22, 1965 : TIROS-9 was launched from Cape Canaveral, FL.
  • July 2, 1965 : TIROS-10 was launched from Cape Canaveral, FL.
  • January 23, 1970 : ITOS-1 was launched from Vandenburg AFB. It was the first of the improved TIROS (ITOS) satellites.
  • December 11, 1970 : NOAA-1 (ITOS-A) was launched.
  • October 21, 1971 : ITOS-B was launched but failed to achieve a stable orbit.
  • October 15, 1972 : NOAA-2 (ITOS-D) was launched
  • July 16, 1973 : ITOS-E was launched but failed to achieve a stable orbit.
  • November 6, 1973 : NOAA-3 (ITOS-F) was launched.
  • November 15, 1974 : NOAA-4 (ITOS-G) was launched.
  • July 29, 1976 : NOAA-5 (ITOS-H) was launched.
  • October 13, 1978 : TIROS-N was launched from Vandenburg AFB, into a 470-nmi orbit and was the first in the series of a third-generation operational environmental satellite systems. TIROS-N was a research and development spacecraft serving as a protoflight for the operational follow-on series.
  • June 27, 1979 : NOAA-6 (NOAA-A) was launchedfrom Vandenburg AFB, into a 450-nmi orbit. The HIRS, a primary mission sensor, failed September 19, 1983.
  • May 29, 1980 : NOAA-B was launched from Vandenburg AFB, and failed to achieve a usable orbit because of a booster engine anomaly.
  • June 23, 1981 : NOAA-7 (NOAA-C) was launched from Vandenburg AFB, into a 470-nmi orbit. The HIRS, a primary mission sensor, failed February 7, 1985. The spacecraft was deactivated in June 1986 following failure of the power system.
  • March 28, 1983 : NOAA-8 (NOAA-E) was launched from Vandenburg AFB, into a 450-nmi orbit. It was the first of the Advanced TIROS-N (ATN) satellites and included a stretched structure to provide growth capability; it also included the first Search and Rescue (SAR) package.
  • December 29, 1985 : The NOAA-8 (NOAA-E) satellite was lost, following a thermal runaway which destroyed a battery.
  • December 12, 1984 : NOAA-9 (NOAA-F) was launched from Vandenburg AFB, into a 470-nmi afternoon orbit.
  • May 7, 1987 : The MSU, a primary mission sensor aboard NOAA-9 (NOAA-F) , failed. The Digital Tape Recorder (DTR) 1A/1B failed two months after launch. The Earth Radiation Budget Experiment (ERBE) Scanner stopped outputting science data in January 1987.
  • June 1986 : NOAA-7 (NOAA-C) was deactivated following failure of the power system.
  • September 17, 1986 : NOAA-10 (NOAA-G) was launched from Vandenburg AFB, into a 450-nmi morning orbit, and it is currently in a standby operational mode with all of its data transmitters turned off. The SAR Processor (SARP) 406 MHz receiver has also failed. In December 1994, the AVHRR IR channels were damaged and remain severely degraded from a satellite tumble caused by an overflow of the satellite's ephemeris clock.
  • March 31, 1987 : NOAA-6 (NOAA-A) greatly exceeded its two-year lifetime and was totally deactivated after nearly eight years of operational service.
  • September 24, 1988 : NOAA-11 (NOAA-H) was launched from Vandenburg AFB into a 470-nmi afternoon orbit. The AVHRR failed September 13, 1994. It is currently in a standby operational mode transmitting global and real-time SAR data directly to local users around the world. The increase of maximum Sun angle from 68 degree to 80 degree allows an afternoon nodal crossing closer to noon to enhance data collection. The HIRS/2, MSU, and SSU instruments and the power subsystems operate satisfactorily.
  • May 14, 1991 : NOAA-12 (NOAA-D) was launched from Vandenburg AFB, into a 450-nmi morning orbit and is currently the semi-operational backup morning satellite. It replaced NOAA-G (10) in orbit, however, it does not have a SAR package on board. The Skew Gyro periodically exhibits a high drift rate, which is corrected with real-time operational command procedures. In May 1997 the HIRS filter wheel mechanism degraded to the poing that soundings were unusable. The remaining instruments and other subsystems continue to operate satisfactorily. NOAA-12 was placed in standby mode on December 14, 1998 when NOAA-15 became operational. Suffering from a severely degraded power system, the satellite was decommissioned on August 10, 2007.
  • September 17, 1991 : NOAA-10 (NOAA-G) was placed in standby (the date NOAA-12 became fully operational). In January 1997, the MSU scanner displayed anomalous readings. The telemetry indicates that the digital encoder failed. The MSU scanner motor was commanded off in February 1997. A MIRP-related missing minor frame anomaly occurred in August 1998. The HRPT data is unusable due to an unstable MIRP and faulty AVHRR. The satellite was deactivated on August 30, 2001.
  • August 9, 1993 : NOAA-13 (NOAA-I) was launched from Vandenburg AFB, at 10:02Z into a 470-nmi afternoon orbit.
  • August 21, 1993 : Two weeks after launch, NOAA-13 (NOAA-I) suffered a power system anomaly. All attempts to contact or command the spacecraft since the power failure have been unsuccessful.
  • September 1994 : The NOAA-11 (NOAA-H) AVHRR scan motor failed, leaving the instrument inoperative. In October 1994 the Solar Backscatter Ultraviolet Radiometer/2 (SBUV/2) diffuser failed, however, the instrument continues to collect global ozone data. The satellite was placed in standby mode in March 1995 and was reactivated to provide soundings after a NOAA-12 HIRS filter wheel anomaly in May 1997. The MSU science data is no longer usable, so the instrument was powered off in March 1333. NOAA-11 was decommissioned on June 16, 2004.
  • December 30, 1994 : NOAA-14 (NOAA-J) was launched from Vandenburg AFB, into a 470-nmi afternoon orbit and is currently designated as the operational afternoon satellite. In January 1995, it was determined that one of the four Solar Environmental Monitor (SEM) telescopes was inoperative, reducing data collected by 12%.
  • August 1995 : NOAA-9 (NOAA-F) , a very high power overvoltage condition resulted in the failure of the MIRP, the AVHRR, Battery #1 charge regulator, and Inertia Momentum Unit (IMU) temperature control amplifier. The MIRP failure also resulted in the loss of the global SAR data via Global Area Coverage (GAC) data stream. The satellite's capability to collect, process, and distribute SBUV/2, SSU, and ERBE-Nonscanner (NS) data was now limited to stored TIROS Information Processor (TIP) data. The SARR transmitter failed on December 18, 1987. The satellite was deactivated on February 13, 1998.
  • May 13, 1998 : NOAA-15 (NOAA-K) was launched from Vandenburg AFB, at 8:52 PDT from Vandenberg AFB. The spacecraft was injected in to a 450-nmi morning orbit and is currently the designated the AM secondary satellite. The NOAA satellite status web site shows the following subsystems or instruments in a yellow status. Communications, AMSU-A1, AMSU-B, AVHRR, HIRS, and SARR.
  • September 21, 2000 : NOAA-16 (NOAA-L) was launched from Vandenberg AFB. NOAA-16 is currently the PM secondary satellite. The NOAA satellite status web site shows the following subsystems or instruments in a yellow status. ADACS, Communications, Data Handling, AMSU-A1, AVHRR, HIRS, SARR, and SBUV.
  • August 30, 2001 : The NOAA-10 (NOAA-G) was deactivated.
  • June 24, 2002 : NOAA-17 (NOAA-M) was launched from Vandenberg AFB. The satellite is designated as the AM Backup and the Communication subsystem is reported as yellow. The AMSU-A1 instrument is reported as Red for total failure.
  • June 16, 2004 : The NOAA-11 (NOAA-H) satellite was decommissioned.
  • May 20, 2005 : NOAA-18 (NOAA-N) was launched from Vandenberg AFB. NOAA-N is currently the PM primary satellite. The NOAA satellite status web site reports that the HIRS instrument is red.
  • October 19, 2006 : Launch of MetOp-A, the first of three European Space Agency (ESA) and European Organisation for the Exploitation of Meteorological Satellites (Eumetsat) weather satellites.
  • May 23, 2007 : Following more than 13 years of service, and after evaluating the satellite health and ability to provide meaningful data to the scientific community, commands to complete decommissioning of the NOAA-14 (NOAA-J) satellite
  • February 6, 2009 : NOAA-19, the fifth and last in the current series of polar-orbiting satellites was launched
  • September 17, 2012 : Launch of MetOp-B, the second of three European Space Agency (ESA) and European Organisation for the Exploitation of Meteorological Satellites (Eumetsat) weather satellites.
  • November 6, 2018 : The third MetOp satellite, MetOp-C, launches on a Soyuz rocket from the Guiana Space Centre (CSG) in Kourou, French Guiana
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