NOAA's weather satellites : economically beneficial pathfinders
Wilson, Andrew Hamilton
Boger, Dan C.
Durkee, Philip A.
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The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration's (NOAA) meteorological satellites have made many important contributions to society since their first introduction over 30 years ago. These polarorbiting and geostationary satellite systems provide weather information as well as other benefits to both the public and private sectors. This thesis examines a number of these economically benefitted areas and quantifies these contributions when possible. Additionally, the concept of weather satellite provided data as a public or a private good is analyzed. The growing private sector application of satellite derived data, or so called value-added service, is surveyed. A few key examples of this field are identified, and the impacts of past, current, and future governmental data dissemination policies are discussed. In conclusion, the role NOAA's environmental satellites will play in the planned global observation of the earth is discussed. By studying these satellite systems in this way, their worldwide benefits to society can be ascertained, both in terms of current economic benefits as well as their important role as a test case for the future of earth remote sensing.
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