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NOAA Announces Commercial Space Weather Data Pilot Awards

July 14, 2022

NOAA today awarded three Commercial Weather Data Pilot (CWDP) space weather contracts to GeoOptics Inc. (Pasadena, CA), Space Sciences and Engineering LLC, PlanetiQ (Golden, CO), and Spire Global Subsidiary, Inc (San Francisco, CA). 

NOAA’s Commercial Data Program (CDP) supports CWDP studies to demonstrate the quality and impact of commercial data on NOAA’s weather forecast models. These contract awards constitute the next round of NOAA’s CWDP studies with a particular focus on space weather data. 

GeoOptics, PlanetiQ and Spire will provide near real-time radio occultation measurements from Global Navigation Satellite System (GNSS) receivers that will enable NOAA to derive ionospheric products that meet the current and anticipated needs of operational space weather models and applications. The commercial data measurements will provide insight into near-real-time ionospheric conditions that can impact a wide range of activities, including aviation, satellite operations, navigation, and communications. 

These space weather CWDP studies are expected to last about 12 months. Upon completion and evaluation, successful CWDP studies may lead to sustained commercial data purchases by CDP to support NOAA’s operational forecasting endeavors. 

The CWDP awards are pursuant to the Promoting Research and Observations of Space Weather to Improve the Forecasting of Tomorrow (PROSWIFT) Act (Public Law 116-181) and the Weather Research and Forecasting Innovation Act of 2017 (Public Law 115-25). The awards represent NOAA’s next step toward working with the commercial sector to obtain and analyze space weather data to meet its critical space weather forecasting mission.

The latest updates and activities on NOAA’s CDP are available at the Office of Space Commerce CDP website.