Washington, USA, 11 April 2007: U.S. scientists have announced a plan to restore a key ozone layer climate sensor to a satellite scheduled for launch in 2009.
The National Aeronautics and Space Administration and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration said the sensor will be returned to the National Polar-orbiting Operational Environmental Satellite System, or NPOESS, program.
However, officials said the sensor’s restoration will be contingent on successful negotiations between the Northrop Grumman Space Technology Corporation, the mission’s prime contractor, and the government.
NPOESS is an environmental monitoring program directed by the U.S. Department of Commerce, NASA and the Department of Defense. A recent restructuring of the program had removed the sensor from the mission.
NOAA and NASA have agreed to share the cost of the sensor, which will measure the Earth’s vertical distribution of ozone to give scientists a better understanding of the content and distribution of gases in the planet’s atmosphere.