Metop-B weather satellite launch Twitter interview

To celebrate the impending launch of weather satellite Metop-B, we held a twitterview – an interview conducted on Twitter, with EUMETSAT. Metop-B, due for launch on 17 September 2012, is the second of the EUMETSAT Polar System (EPS) satellites, which provide data for use by meteorologists and climate scientists wordwide.

Artist’s impression of a Metop satellite in polar orbit above the Earth.
Copyright 2012 EUMETSAT.

Q1: @metoffice How long has the Met Office been using EUMETSAT’s satellite data? #metopb
A1: @EUMETSAT Since @EUMETSAT came into being in 1986. Before that it was @ESA from 1978. #metopb
Q2: @metoffice What type of data do you use? #metopb
A2: @EUMETSAT Meteosat imagery and data from Metop-A for #NWP assimilation and Forecasters #metopb
Q3: @metoffice Why did you start using it? #metopb
A3: @EUMETSAT #Satellites give a global view important for our global weather forecast models. #metopb
Q4: @metoffice What difference has satellite data made to your weather forecasts? #metopb
A4: @EUMETSAT Improvements in forecasts when we assimilate satellite sounder data into our NWP model. #IASI and #ATOVS have a great impact
Q5: @metoffice Are you able to see things now you couldn’t before? #metopb
A5: @EUMETSAT #SEVIRI gives us valuable information on #cloud motions & for tracking desert dust & volcanic ash #metopb
Q6: @metoffice What difference will the launch of #metopb make to you?
A6: @EUMETSAT Increased resilience for the next 5 years and better coverage of ocean winds. #metopb
Q7: @metoffice Do you think the day will come when only satellite observations are needed? #metopb
A7: @EUMETSAT No. There will always be a role for conventional observations from radiosondes and weather radar. #metopb
Q8: @metoffice What is your favourite weather phenomenon which you can see in a satellite image? #metopb
A8: @EUMETSAT Clear skies over England and Tropical Cyclones elsewhere in the world. #metopb

For news and updates on Metop-B, visit the EUMETSAT Metop-B launch site.

To find out more about how the Met Office uses weather satellites, visit our satellite applications pages.

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