January 20, 2012
EUMETCast expands global dissemination to include FY-3B data
As part of the ever growing cooperation with the China Meteorological Administration (CMA), EUMETSAT now receives and disseminates sounding data from a second Chinese polar-orbiting satellite, benefitting users in Europe and beyond.
On 16 December 2011, sounding data from FY-3B began to be received and test dissemination started on EUMETCast. The new products will be made available to EUMETSAT Member States on 24 January 2012. This is in addition to the data already received and disseminated from FY-3A since the end of 2010.
The addition of FY-3B data to EUMETCast follows discussions between EUMETSAT and CMA. During a bilateral meeting between the two organisations in May 2011 in Geneva, CMA agreed to add FY-3B data to the FY-3A data it already shares with EUMETSAT and its Member States.
The data from the microwave humidity and temperature sounders (MWHS and MWTS) on board the FY-3A and FY-3B satellites are dumped at a reception station in Kiruna in northern Sweden or in China and transmitted to CMA in Beijing. After processing, the data are then transmitted to EUMETSAT in Darmstadt via the Regional Meteorological Data Communication Network (RMDCN) and then added to EUMETCast. The data from FY-3A and FY-3B are similar to those collected by the Microwave Humidity Sounder (MHS) and Advanced Microwave Sounding Unit (AMSU) on EUMETSAT’s Metop-A polar-orbiting satellite, which have a significant positive impact on the Numerical Weather Prediction models run by National Meteorological Services of EUMETSAT’s Member States and by the European Centre for Medium-range Weather Forecasts (ECMWF).
In addition to being available on EUMETCast, FY-3A and FY-3B MWHS and MWTS data will be available to Asia-Pacific users via CMA’s CMACast broadcast dissemination system, which is currently in its validation phase and expected to become operational in the course of 2012.