Overview of FY-2H geostationary meteorological satellite

19-06-2018Source:China Meteorological News Press

On 21:07 p.m. BJT, June 5, the FY-2H meteorological satellite, carried by a Long March-3A rocket, was launched from the Xichang Satellite Launch Center in southwest China's Sichuan Province. As the westernmost on-duty satellite in geostationary meteorological satellites layout of China, FY-2H can provide custom-made services for countries along “Belt and Road” territories.

During the Launch of FY-2H Photoed by Liang Keyan

“Belt and Road” territories are lacking in meteorological data and subject to natural disasters. In response to a request from the World Meteorological Organization (WMO) and the Asia-Pacific Space Cooperation Organization (APSCO), the setpoint position of the newly launched Fengyun-2H will be placed westward. State Administration of Science, Technology, and Industry for National Defence,China Meteorological Administration (CMA) and APSCO signed an intent of cooperation to finalize that FY-2H be moved westward by 7.5°, to 79°East. Its performance is more stable. The little positional change enables a wider coverage. This positional change has also embraced vital significance to solving data acquisition and application in geostationary meteorological satellites for countries along “Belt and Road”territories. This move has further optimized orbital layout of FY series meteorological satellites, and better covered upper reaches weather systems in China, and uplifted weather prediction accuracy and response to climate change.

This positional change is not the starting point that China has provided meteorological services for countries along “ Belt and Road” territories. In August, 2017, FY-2E captured heavy precipitation sign in advance and timely released meteorological warning, which has evaded casualties. During Nepal’s earthquake in 2015, FY series meteorological satellite data has provided instrumental support for this country within 24 hours in the aftermath of the earthquake.

FY-2H is positioned over Indian Ocean and has realized the sustained observation of one third of the Earth’s territories from Oceania to Central Africa and can provide favorable observation perspectives and custom-made high frequency sub-regional observation for countries and regions like West Asia, Central Asia, Africa, and Europe. FY-2H, equipped with a scanning radiometer and space environment monitor, can supply dozens of remote sensing products like cloud images, clear sky atmospheric radiation, sand and dust, and Cloud Motion Wind (CMW) for weather prediction, disaster warning, and environmental monitoring, and enrich data sources of global NWP models.

FY-2H Coverage after it is moved westward by 7.5°, to 79°East

In the meanwhile, it can collect and transmit environmental monitoring materials in meteorological, marine and hydrologic sphere, broadcast digital cloud images, and closely watch over weather systems evolution at different temporal and spatial scales combined with 3 in-orbit FY-2 satellites (FY-2E, FY-2F and FY-2G).

Mr. Lu Feng, deputy chief designer of FY-2 ground application system remarked that if a large-scale cargo vessel departed from Shanghai port in China and reached the Red Sea via South China Sea, Strait of Malacca, Indian Ocean, and Gulf of Aden, it could enjoy 24-hour uninterrupted meteorological satellite observation services.

According to Mr. Sun Jun, chief forecaster of National Meteorological Center (NMC), FY-2H with a distinctive position, will be instrumental in unraveling the “atmospheric code” of upper reaches weather system in China and assisting forecasters in timely grasping weather system by observing like cold wave, precipitation and cloud belts in Central Asia and areas over Indian Ocean. China will provide high frequency observation at 5-6 minutes intervals, making local regions obtain FY satellite high frequency cloud images and relevant quantitative products, and offer timely information support for disaster prevention and mitigation.


FY-2H Geostationary Satellite

With the Emergency Support Mechanism for International Users of FengYun Meteorological Satellites in Disaster Prevention and Mitigation, if countries along the Belt and Road or APSCO member states are gripped by disasters like typhoons, rainstorms, sandstorms and forest or prairie fires, they can apply to activate dedicated observation by FY satellites. At that time, FY-2H, equipped with high frequency sub cloud images at 6-minute intervals, and related quantitative product service abilities, can offer timely decision-making support for disaster prevention and mitigation.

FY-2 series are China’s first-generation geostationary meteorological satellites developed by China. From the first one in 1997, China has altogether lifted off 8 FY-2 satellites and has forged an operational layout of multiple in-orbit satellites, mutual backup, coordinated operation, and timely intensive observation. Compared with FY-2G, 15 technologies of FY-2H have been upgraded. It is the most reliable satellite with the most stable performance among FY-2 satellites.

FY-2H satellite is the last in the FY-2 series. After the launch, FY-2H will conduct a four-month in-orbit testing. By that time, China will distribute gratuitous satellite data and products to international users. At the same time, CMA will update CMACast reception station free of change and provide technical training.

FY-2H reinforces its meteorological observation for countries along “Belt and Road” territories not only in response to WMO proposal. It also embodies that China has made a crucial contribution to the international community and further elevated the global standing and prowess of space undertaking and meteorological cause. FY-2H carries seminal significance to ensuring stable operation of geostationary meteorological satellites and the smooth transition to second-generation geostationary meteorological satellites FY-4.


Concept Image of FY-2 satellite

Prior to its launch, 16 FY series meteorological satellites have been launched. A national satellite remote sensing application system composed of a national-level data processing and service center, 31 provincial application center, and over 2500 reception and application stations has been forged. China has become an important member of global integrated earth observation system, offering satellite data and products for over 80 countries and territories.(Jun.19)

Editor: Liu Shuqiao