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GOES-R Research

The Geostationary Operational Environmental Satellite-R (GOES-R) series of NOAA geostationary weather satellites represents a significant advancement in earth observation over previous NOAA geostationary weather satellites.  The Advanced Baseline Imager (ABI) provides 5x the temporal, 4x the spatial, and 3x the spectral resolution over the previous GOES Imager. Additionally, the Geostationary Lightning Mapper (GLM) captures total lightning information across much of the hemisphere, a new capability of GOES satellites. These advancements have resulted in more timely and accurate weather forecasts and Decision Support Services for a variety of meteorological phenomena that directly affect public safety, protection of property, and economic health and development.

GOES-R, the first satellite in the GOES-R series, launched into orbit on 18 November 2016, becoming GOES-16, and ultimately the operational GOES-East satellite on 18 December 2017. The second satellite in the GOES-R series, GOES-S, launched on 01 March 2018, becoming GOES-17, and finally the operational GOES-West satellite on 12 February 2019. GOES-T Launched in March 2022, becoming GOES-18, and was transitioned to be the operational GOES-West satellite in January 2023. GOES-U is expected to launch in Spring 2024, to round out the series.  The ABI and GLM instruments will have similar capabilities across all four of the GOES-R series satellites.

For detailed information on GOES-R see the GOES-R Program Office homepage at

The follow-on program to GOES-R, Geostationary Extended Observations (GeoXO) is well into the planning stages, and will provide a continuation and expansion of GOES-R series satellite observations. More information on GeoXO can be found at: 

Examples of Products Generated at CIRA/RAMMB and Applied to GOES-R

GOES-R Plains Dust Storm

DEBRA-Dust Product


Snow/Cloud Product

GOES-R Twincanes Smoke

Geocolor Product

GOES-R Imagery/Products at CIRA/RAMMB

Below is a listing of GOES imagery products generated and distributed by CIRA/RAMMB, including information about the product and data access

Day Snow/Cloud Layers
GOES-R Imagery Journal Articles

A list of journal articles specifically discussing GOES-R ABI imagery and direct imagery applications. A more comprehensive list of GOES-R related publications can be found here.

Using NOAA Satellite Imagery to Detect and Track Hazardous Sea Spray in the High LatitudesLine et al. 2022
Ground-Based Corroboration of GOES-17 Fire Detection Capabilities During Ignition of the Kincade Fire.Lindley et al. 2020
Application of the GOES-16 Advanced Baseline Imager: Morphology of a Preconvective Environment on 17 April 2019Grasso et al. 2020
GOES-16 Observations of Blowing Snow in Horizontal Convective Rolls on 24 February 2019Kennedy and Jones, 2020
Introducing Lightning Threat Messaging Using the GOES-16 Day Cloud Phase Distinction RGB CompositeElsenheimer and Gravelle, 2019
The Above-Anvil Cirrus Plume: An Important Severe Weather Indicator in Visible and Infrared Satellite ImageryBedka et al. 2018
Applications of the 16 Spectral Bands on the Advanced Baseline Imager (ABI)Schmit et al. 2018
Using the GOES-16 Split Window Difference to Detect a Boundary prior to Cloud FormationLindsey et al. 2018
A Closer Look at the ABI on the GOES-R SeriesSchmit et al. 2017
Wildfire Detection Notifications for Impact-Based Decision Support Services in Oklahoma Using Geostationary Super Rapid Scan Satellite ImageryLindley et al. 2016
Use of Geostationary Super Rapid Scan Satellite Imagery by the Storm Prediction CenterLine et al. 2016
Rapid Refresh Information of Significant Events: Preparing Users for the Next Generation of Geostationary Operational SatellitesSchmit et al. 2015
Geostationary Operational Environmental Satellite (GOES)-14 super rapid scan operations to prepare for GOES-RSchmit et al. 2013
The GOES-R Proving Ground: Accelerating User Readiness for the Next-Generation Geostationary Environmental Satellite SystemGoodman et al. 2012
Introducing the next-generation Advanced Baseline Imager on GOES-RSchmit et al. 2005
Basic Imagery Applications Training Topics
TopicKey Blog PostsTraining Webinars/Modules
Clouds (Day)Using GOES-16 Day Cloud Phase Distinction RGB to Analyze Complex Daytime Cloud and Snow Cover Scenes  
Clouds (Night)Using GOES-16 Nighttime Microphysics RGB for Fog Detection  
ConvectionTexas Supercell 4/8/2021RGB Applications: Anticipating Convective Initiation Using the Nighttime Microphysics RGBCOMET MetEd – Convective InitiationCOMET MetEd – Convective Maintenance
FiresGOES-16 Tools to Observe and Monitor FiresEast Troublesome Fire Growth 10/21 – GOES and JPSS Imagery  
WinterNew York Snow Squalls 05 Dec 201918 Dec 2019 NY Snow SquallSnow Squalls in Pennsylvania on 8 January 2020FDTD Webinar – Snow SquallsCOMET MetEd Module – Snow Squalls
AviationUse of GOES Imagery During Oklahoma Fog Event 
Surface FeaturesVIIRS and ABI Capture Ice vs. Snow and Melting Snow  
RGB General  
ParallaxWhy is my GOES-16 Imagery Displaced? Parallax!Surface Features Displaced In Satellite Imagery at Higher ElevationsWhere is the Hot Spot? 
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