simulated GOES-R images for all 16 bands of data collection

The Harris-built ground system delivers time critical weather products directly to NOAA and also generates the GOES Rebroadcast (GRB) signal.  The GRB system is the primary space relay of data products from the GOES-R ground system processing. GRB will replace the GOES VARiable (GVAR) service. This service allows users in the Western Hemisphere to receive full-resolution imagery and weather products in near real time. The delivery of this information is essential to weather forecasting across the AmericasNorth, South, and Central— and the Caribbean.

The GOES-R satellite instruments transmit raw data about Earth, environment, and space, which is received by the ground system. The ground system’s robust data management and data processing capabilities turn the raw data into imagery and information that is assimilated by weather forecasting computer models.  The ground system sends this Level 1B data from each instrument and Level 2 data from the Geostationary Lightning Mapper signal back to the GOES-R satellite for retransmission which can be received by direct read-out terminals. 

Visit the NOAA/NASA GOES-R site at

GOES Rebroadcast

The GOES-R sensors—including the Advanced Baseline Imager (ABI)—can greatly improve the ability of meteorologists to predict the weather, but getting that data into their hands in a timely manner is critical.

The GRB system will provide full-resolution, calibrated, near-real-time direct broadcast of the Level 1B data from the GOES-R instruments and Level 2 data from the Geostationary Lightening Mapper. GRB is a 31 megabytes per second direct readout broadcast that replaces the 2.1 megabytes per second GVAR service. The GRB signal is relayed by the GOES-R satellite to compatible ground receive terminals in the satellite’s field of view.

A GRB ground terminal includes an antenna and a suite of equipment to process the radio frequency signals into a digital data stream and ingest the GRB data to produce Level 1B and Level 2 weather products. Comparing GOES-NOP satellite data to GOES-R series data is like the difference in black and white television compared to color HD television. This higher resolution and color imagery means larger volumes of data from the GRB, requiring an upgrade to next-gen capable GRB ground terminals.


Earth from space from the Himawari-8 satellite
Natural color IntelliEarth™ WxConnect™ full-disk image from HimawariCast.


IntelliEarth™ WxConnect™ Direct Receive System

With the IntelliEarth™ WxConnect™ system from Harris, forecasters have the ability to directly receive GOES-R rebroadcast information without reliance on terrestrial communications. WxConnect™ processes the high-density GRB data streams at high rate so that real-time, science-sanctioned weather products can be generated for distribution, data fusion, advanced analytics, and visualization.

Harris Corporation has already delivered 26 WxConnect™ systems to the National Weather Service.  Built on open standards and verified through thousands of hours of rigorous verification testing and validation, WxConnect™ systems are modular and scalable, and compatible with standard industry weather visualization and forecasting applications. Harris ENVI® visualization software is available for WxConnect™ systems to assist in creating custom imagery. Harris developed an interactive, real-time Advanced Product Preview (APP) tool powered by IDL® software for WxConnect™ to more effectively manipulate and display the 16 channels of imagery. Translating this into real-life concerns – WxConnect™ systems from Harris is making it easy to take the core weather information from the GOES-R system and convert that data into tailored products which are essential to the immediate needs and concerns of the end user.  These time-critical products may include wind vectors in and around flight and launch facilities, or thunderstorms or fire hazards in areas where recurring and imminent threats exist.

For more information about Harris Corporation's partnership with NOAA and NASA on the GOES-R program, contact us at:


IntelliEarth™ WxConnect™ Advanced Product Previewer Tool

IntelliEarth™ WxConnect™ Advanced Product Previewer.


IntelliEarth WxConnect Dust Product Example - Gobi Desert Dust Storm

IntelliEarth™ WxConnect™ Visualizations using Harris' ENVI® Visualization tool.