Orbital Micro Systems Secures $4.9M NASA/NOAA SMBA Instrument Phase A Study Contract

Orbital Micro Systems, the instrument design and manufacturing subsidiary of Weather Stream, a leader in the collection, aggregation, and dissemination of commercial weather and climate data, announced it was awarded a Phase A study contract from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s (NOAA) Near-Earth Orbit Network (NEON) Sounder for Microwave-Based Applications (SMBA) program to perform development work on an instrument concept that can support NOAA’s requirement for a next-generation low-Earth orbit (LEO) microwave sounder.

As a part of the $4.9M contract issued by NASA on behalf of NOAA, Orbital Micro Systems will design and develop a passive microwave sounder instrument specifically to meet NOAA’s requirements for global weather data collection utilizing state of the art radiometer technology.

“We are honored to participate in this important national program and are pleased that Orbital Micro Systems’ demonstrated expertise in passive microwave sounder technologies has been recognized by NASA and NOAA. Our team will work diligently to deliver high performance, robust, and cost-effective solutions that will support the NEON program’s objectives and provide enhanced weather observation capabilities,” said Michael Hurowitz, chief executive officer of Weather Stream. In its announcement of the contract award, NASA stated that microwave sounders provide critical data on the physical properties of our atmosphere, such as temperature and moisture, which heavily influence weather patterns and enable the NOAA National Weather Service’s numerical weather models to forecast weather three days in the future and beyond.

The Phase A project is slated to run 12 months with multiple deliverables and milestones throughout the term. Weather Stream anticipates that its Global Environmental Monitoring System – Cubic Zirconia (GEMS-CZ) instrument will achieve NASA’s target mass, power, and performance requirements.

“Commercial and government collaboration is crucial to accelerating access to global weather and climate data through innovative satellite technology,” said Hurowitz. “It will take a concerted effort from all stakeholders to address global weather data needs. We are grateful for the selection of Orbital Micro Systems for this project and are eager to contribute to this important mission.”