NPP Mission Criteria

Image: NASA/Scientific Visualization Studio
Image: NASA/Scientific Visualization Studio

NPP’s main criteria is to provide a continuation of a group of earth observing satellites initiated by EOS (Earth Observing System) Terra, Aqua and Aura Missions. Also, NPP Mission Success is determined by its ability to reduce risks that are associated with new and advanced observational technology and techniques as systems are being transitioned from the NASA research program as NPP provides a testbed for new sensor packages. This includes, pre-operational risk reduction demonstration and validation for chosen instruments and processing algorithms. Ground data processing, archive and distribution are also mission criteria for NPP as new protocols concerning distribution of data are implemented for NPP. Data records provided by NPP will fulfill the US Climate Change Research Program objectives that include understanding the earth’s climate system and its variability on a decadal basis.

Science Criteria (Source: NASA Goddard)
  1. Continue vertical temperature and moisture profiles of the Erath’s atmosphere with accuracy, extent, and frequency consistent with those made with the Aqua satellite sensors.
  2. Continue a record of sea surface temperature with accuracy, extent and frequency consistent with those made with Terra and Aqua sensors.
  3. Continue a record of surface biophysical and climatic parameters with accuracy, extent and frequency consistent with those made with Terra and Aqua sensors.
  4. Continue a record of cloud and aerosol properties with accuracy, extent and frequency consistent with those made with Terra and Aqua sensors.
  5. Continue a record of ozone total column abundance and vertical profile with accuracy, extent and frequency consistent with those made with previous US spacecraft making comparable measurements.