If you're in the US and Europe, you enjoy the benefits of a very good forecast. Each Thursday, a farmer has a relatively good idea of what the weather will look like on Saturday. Unfortunately, that's not the case in developing countries. Spire's forecast is aimed to bring the same level of forecast accuracy experienced by the top countries in the world to the 6 billion people who need it.
Spire was the first and is currently the only commercial provider of GNSS radio occultation data. This data uses global navigation system signals to collect incredibly accurate weather data about the entire planet. RO data is used to greatly increase forecast accuracy.
GNSS Reflectometry (GNSS-R) collects navigation signals as they reflect off of the face of the Earth. The resulting data (like soil moisture and water surface roughness) can be important data sets in forecasting. This service will begin late in 2019.
GNSS-RO & GPS-RO (sometimes used interchangeably) harness the power of global navigation systems to capture weather data. As Spire's LEMUR satellites orbit the Earth, they pick up signals from GPS satellites rising and falling on the horizon. These signals, which scrape through the atmosphere, are bent by the moisture that they encounter. Once analyzed, the bent signals tells us a great deal about the temperature, pressure, and humidity of the air on our planet.
Spire is the only commercial entity in the world with the expertise to process raw radio occultation data into measurements to be placed into weather forecasts. Each profile is collected with a Spire satellite and analyzed using Spire’s cloud-based processing system. The system is able to scale from thousands to hundreds of thousands of profiles processed per day.
NOAA Commercial Weather Data Pilot
The NOAA Commercial Space Policy called for NOAA to seek demonstration projects that validate the viability of commercial weather data for integration into NOAA’s meteorological models. Spire was the only company to complete the first round of data trials and will complete the second round of the trial in 2019.