The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration has awarded a total of $23M in two-year contracts to GeoOptics and Spire Global for radio occultation data that the agency plans to use for operational weather forecasts.
NOAA awarded the indefinite-delivery/indefinite-quantity contracts on Nov. 20 under the Commercial Weather Data Pilot program for work that will run through 2022, the Department of Commerce's space commerce office said.
The CWDP initiative aims to verify how effectively commercial satellite-based data can support weather forecasting and meteorological modeling.
The pilot is one of the agency's demonstration projects mandated by the NOAA Commercial Space Policy to know if NOAA’s meteorological models can be fed with commercial environmental data and products and if those can support the agency's Earth observation pursuits.
The agency will issue future delivery orders over a two-year ordering period for commercial data purchase.
NOAA seeks to support the program's technology research activities using the requested $23M in fiscal year 2021 funding.