NASA has chosen the Maxar Intelsat 40e Geostationary Satellite as a Earth’s atmospheric pollution sensor, which will measure the North American atmosphere every hour and help improve air quality forecasting. NASA says the convective emissions: The POLLUTION Monitoring (TEMPO) instrument will enter orbit with the Intelsat 40e geostationary satellite as a payload in 2022, and will measure the mass of the North American atmosphere in unprecedented detail during the day.
From 22,236 miles above the Earth’s equator, TEMPO will measure the entire North American atmosphere every hour, including ozone, nitrogen dioxide, formaldehyde, and aerosol content. Measurements will be made publicand and help improve air quality forecasting. Since last August, NASA has refreshed Earth observation satellite data every three hours to help the air quality index (AQI) used in local weather forecasts. With TEMPO in the future, NASA can update data every hour, potentially further improving air quality information to the public.
The TEMPO instrument was developed by Ball Aerospace and led by Kelly Chance, a project leader, and is currently in a warehouse in Boulder, Colorado, and is awaiting shipment to the Maxar satellite manufacturing facility in Palo Alto, California. The Maxar Intelsat 40e geostationary satellite will be launched sometime in 2022.