NASA Tasks University of Michigan to Continue CYGNSS Satellite Mission; Karen St. Germain Quoted

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Cyclone Global
Cyclone Global Navigation Satellite System

The University of Michigan has secured a $39 million contract to continue operating a constellation of eight satellites designed to help meteorologists predict and study hurricanes.

NASA said Wednesday that it will continue to use the Cyclone Global Navigation Satellite System (CYGNSS) to gather data needed for the development of weather prediction models.

CYGNSS uses the GPS signal scattering technique to visualize storms through heavy rain and measure the surface wind strength of hurricanes' cores.

The satellites also scan ocean surface winds and tropical cyclones to support forecasts. The system's continued operation would expand research on extreme weather events and long-term climate variability.

“CYGNSS is also a powerful tool for flood detection on land and ocean microplastic debris detection – that’s the kind of added value we love to see, and it’s paving the way for more science that will have significant societal benefits," said Karen St. Germain, who leads NASA’s Earth Science Division.