WASThe GOES-S satellite being lowered into a thermal vacuum chamber. (Credit: Lockheed Martin)
WASHINGTON, DC (NOAA PR) — A blockage in the loop heat pipe of the Advanced Baseline Imager (ABI), the primary instrument on NOAA’s GOES-17 satellite, prevented the instrument from cooling properly and impeded its ability to collect data, according to a special Mishap Investigation Board.
During the instrument check-out phase after GOES-17’s March 1,
2018 launch, engineers discovered the ABI’s infrared detectors could not
maintain the required temperatures in certain orbital conditions.
The board, which NOAA and NASA appointed, concluded that the blockage
restricted the flow of coolant in the pipes, causing the ABI
electronics to overheat, reducing the sensitivity of its infrared
Engineers were able to mitigate the issue through operational changes
to the instrument and mission operations, including the use of
Artificial Intelligence techniques, to restore most of the ABI’s
functionality. The GOES-17 ABI is now projected to deliver more than 97
percent of the data it was designed to provide.
Today, GOES-17 is providing faster, more accurate, and more detailed
observations used by NOAA National Weather Service forecasters to
predict Pacific storm ...