The China Meteorological Administration (CMA) has successfully launched its new polar-orbiting meteorological satellite, Fengyun-3D (FY-3D), which will provide early weather warnings to help reduce the impact of natural disasters. The satellite took off on November 15 from the Taiyuan Launch Center onboard a Long-March-4C carrier rocket and will replace CMAs eight-year-old weather satellite FY-3B. FY-3D has been fitted with five completely new remote sensing instruments including the Hyperspectral Infrared Atmospheric Sounder (HIRAS); the Greenhouse Gases Absorption Spectrometer (GAS); the Wide-angle Aurora Imager (WAI); and the Ionospheric PhotoMeter (IPM). The function of the satellites core instrument MERSI (Medium Resolution Spectral Imager) has also been upgraded. The satellite has been fitted with 10 remote sensing instruments in total. HIRAS covers 70 times the number of spectral channels compared to its predecessor and is expected to dramatically increase the forecast efficiency for typhoons or other high-impact weather events, with predictions up to five or seven days in advance. MERSI, another core instrument on FY-3D, is comparable to the imager on board Americas JPSS satellite and is capable of precise, quantitative detection for clouds, aerosols and ocean colors, which is useful for disaster monitoring and environmental management. China has successfully launched 16 meteorological satellites to date, seven of which remain in orbit providing large quantities of observational data for meteorology, oceanography, agriculture and aviation services.
Helen has worked for UKi Media & Events for more than a decade. She joined the company as assistant editor on Passenger Terminal World and has since progressed to become editor of five publications, covering everything from aviation, logistics and automotive to meteorology. She has a love for travel and property and has redeveloped three houses in three years. When she’s not editing magazines, she’s running around after her two boys and their partner in crime, Pete the pug.