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Proceedings Paper • Open Access

Design, calibration, and on-orbit testing of the geostationary lightning mapper on the GOES-R series weather satellite
Author(s): Samantha Edgington; Clemens Tillier; Mark Anderson

Paper Abstract

The GOES-R series is the latest in a long line of American geostationary weather satellites operated by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA). The two Geostationary Lightning Mapper (GLM) instruments currently operating on the GOES-16 and GOES-17 satellites give NOAA a unique new capability to map in-cloud and cloud-to-ground lightning flashes across the entire hemisphere within seconds of their occurrence. GLM enables improved warning times for severe weather events, decreased false alarms, persistent coverage over wide geographical areas without sampling bias, and long-term monitoring of trends linked to the changing climate.

Viewed from space, emissions from lightning appear as a series of brief (~500 μs) optical pulses diffused through clouds over scales of tens to thousands of km2. A significant portion of the emitted optical radiation is in the form of emission lines, including a prominent neutral atomic oxygen triplet whose emission lines are near 777 nm. GLM discriminates lightning flashes from the bright sunlit cloud background by taking advantage of the spatial, temporal, and spectral characteristics of the optical signature of lightning.

This paper describes key design drivers in the development of GLM, methods used to calibrate the instrument, and lessons learned from on-orbit testing. We discuss optimization of the entire signal chain, from the telescope optics to the ground processing algorithms.

Paper Details

Date Published: 12 July 2019
PDF: 15 pages
Proc. SPIE 11180, International Conference on Space Optics — ICSO 2018, 1118040 (12 July 2019); doi: 10.1117/12.2536063
Show Author Affiliations
Samantha Edgington, Lockheed Martin Space (United States)
Clemens Tillier, Lockheed Martin Space (United States)
Mark Anderson, Lockheed Martin Space (United States)

Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 11180:
International Conference on Space Optics — ICSO 2018
Zoran Sodnik; Nikos Karafolas; Bruno Cugny, Editor(s)

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