METOP AMSU-A data are now processed and monitored

3 November 2006

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The AMSU-A instrument on the METOP-A satellite (launched on 19 October) is providing data that are now processed and monitored by ECMWF.

The METOP-A satellite was launched on 19 October. Data from the AMSU-A instrument was distributed by EUMETSAT from 31 October. Starting from 2nd November, ECMWF is processing and passively monitoring the data that is received.

Data Coverage Plots: 

Departure Statistics: 

About AMSU-A

The Advanced Microwave Sounding Unit – A2 (AMSU-A2) is one of the complement of American instruments provided by NOAA to fly on MetOp-A, -B and –C.

The AMSU-A2 measures scene radiance in the microwave spectrum. The data from this instrument is used in conjunction with the High-resolution Infrared Sounder (HIRS) instrument to calculate the global atmospheric temperature and humidity profiles from the Earth's surface to the upper stratosphere, at approximately 2-millibar pressure altitude (48 km). The data is used to provide precipitation and surface measurements including snow cover, sea-ice concentration and soil moisture. More information on AMSU-A is available from the ESA web site news release (here).


Launched on 19 October 2006, MetOp is Europe's first polar-orbiting satellite dedicated to operational meteorology. It represents the European contribution to a new co-operative venture with the United States providing data to monitor climate and improve weather forecasting. MetOp is a series of three satellites to be launched sequentially over 14 years, forming the space segment of EUMETSAT's Polar System (EPS). For more information on METOP-A, see the ESA web site news release (here).



EUMETSAT web site

ESA web site