Miniature Weather Satellites

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Artist's concept of a CYGNSS SatelliteArtist’s concept of a CYGNSS Satellite (Credit: NASA)

What is small enough to fit in an airliner carry-on bin and has the potential to save thousands of lives and millions of dollars worth of property? The answer is the Cyclone Global Navigation Satellite System (CYGNSS) – NASA’s next-generation hurricane-observing microsatellites, which are now being assembled at the Southwest Research Institute (SwRI) in San Antonio, Texas.

Hurricanes can change direction and intensity without warning and what looks like a mild one headed safely out to sea can quickly gain power and turn landward. Unfortunately, current satellite monitoring systems can only look at such storms periodically, which can lead to some nasty surprises.

CYGNSS consists of a constellation of eight microsatellites and its purpose is to improve hurricane forecasting. It does this by, for the first time, measuring ocean surface winds in and near the inner core of tropical cyclones, typhoons, and hurricanes throughout their life cycles, thereby providing better predictions of a hurricane’s intensity, track, and storm surges.

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About the Common Constitutionalist

Brent, aka The Common Constitutionalist, is a Constitutional Conservative, and advocates for first principles, founders original intent and enemy of progressives. He is former Navy, Martial Arts expert. As well as publisher of the Common Constitutionalist blog, he also is a contributing writer for Political Outcast, Godfather Politics, Minute Men News (Liberty Alliance), Freedom Outpost, the Daily Caller, Vision To America and Free Republic. He also writes an exclusive weekly column for World Net Daily (WND).