California launch of new U.S. weather satellite postponed

JPSS-1, which will be known as NOAA-20 when it reaches polar orbit, will join the Suomi National Polar-orbiting Partnership (Suomi NPP), a joint NOAA-NASA weather satellite, giving the USA the benefit of two, sophisticated polar satellites in the same orbit. NOAA funds and manages the program, operations and data products.

The JPSS-1 satellite is scheduled to launch on November 10 at 1:47 a.m. PST from Vandenberg Air Force Base, Calif.

In its orbit, the satellite will pass over the equator about 14 times per day, and cover the globe twice every 24 hours. Instruments aboard polar-orbiting satellites, like ones aboard JPSS-1 and its preceding spacecraft, known as the Suomi-NPP, obtain data on the winds and moisture in the upper atmosphere.

Crews have postponed this morning's expected launch of a rocket that would have carried Idaho's first satellite into space.

With these varied observations, JPSS will give environmental experts more accurate warnings in advance of hurricanes, tornadoes and blizzards.

Preparations for the launch JPSS-1 rocket have been underway for more than a year. Later in the month, the Delta II interstage and second stage also reached the West Coast launch site.

Liftoff of the United Launch Alliance booster aimed for 1:47 a.m. from Space Launch Complex-2. The rocket's second stage was hoisted into the pad's gantry on April 11, 2017, and mounted atop the first stage of the rocket.

6 On Your Side's Michelle Edmonds was at Vandenberg Air Force Base when the launch was scrubbed. "JPSS will continue this trend", he added.

According to, JPSS-1 is meant to build off the work of other NOAA satellites.

The new polar orbiter will be much closer in, 500 miles above earth. It is now scheduled for tomorrow at 2:47 a.m. Mountain time. "For the better part of a decade, scientists and policymakers have been very concerned about a gap in polar-orbiting satellite coverage of the Earth due to delays in launching JPSS-1 and the obvious aging or potential failure of older birds in orbit", according to Maue.

The U.S. government will make data from the JPSS system available to domestic and worldwide users in support of U.S. commitments to the Global Earth Observation System of Systems (GEOSS).

Assuming that JPSS-1 launches successfully on Tuesday and functions normally in orbit, the US will again have two working polar satellites at work at the same time.

  • Rogelio Becker