FORMOSAT-7 satellites were launched into space on June 25, 2019. Their provisional data was released on December 10, 2019. The formal release is at 02:00 UTC on March 7, 2020 (10 AM, March 7 Taiwan time). The users can download the neutral atmosphere data from Central Weather Bureau’s website: https:// tacc.cwb.gov.tw/v2/download.html. The data product of the previous day will be posted at 02:00 UTC every day.
Narlabs’ National Space Organization (NSPO) under the Ministry Of Science and Technology says, FORMOSAT-7/COSMIC-2 is conducted under a joint agreement between the American Institute in Taiwan and the Taipei Economic and Cultural Representative Office in the United States, with the NOAA (the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration) and NSPO as the designated representatives. This joint program is the one of the biggest science and technology collaborations with U.S. colleagues. . The FORMOSAT-7/COSMIC-2 program is a constellation with six satellites. All six satellites were launched into a 720-km circular orbit. Until today, two of them have been transferred to their 550-km mission orbit. It is expected that these six satellites will be deployed to six different orbital planes through scheduled orbit transfer by February of 2021. The constellation can provide more than 4000 atmospheric profiles each day to a numerical weather prediction model. Such data volume can improve weather forecast accuracy.
The Central Weather Bureau (CWB) says, the data from FORMOSAT-7 can supply observation over the tropical ocean, where, currently, there are very few measurements. Several major weather centers in the world have begun to devote their efforts to optimize FORMOSAT-7 data assimilated into their models since they have obtained the provisional data. CWB has included the data into daily forecast operations. In addition to neutral atmosphere data, such as temperature and moisture profiles, FORMOSAT-7 can also measure the electron density of ionosphere, which can be applied to nowcast and forecast of space weather.
NSPO says, a system named “Taiwan RO Processing System (TROPS)”, jointly implemented by CWB, NCU (National Central University), NCKU (National Cheng-Kung University), and NSPO is able to retrieve FORMOSAT-7 data by domestic endeavors. NCKU observed a small-scale solar storm in August 2019 by using TROPS products. The triggered communication and navigation disturbances are much higher than expected in the areas of central Asia and Europe. The important finding reminds scientists to watch out for the small-scale solar storm. TROPS product has been incorporated into nowcast and forecast of space weather. People can check out space weather status from website https://swoo.cwb.gov.tw.
left to right, Chi-Yen Lin (NCU), Mark Cheng (CWB), Wang Yeong-Her (NARLabs), Raymond Greene (AIT), Yu-Chin Hsu (MOST), Chun-Liang Lin (NSPO), Vicky Chu (NSPO), and Prof. Charles Lin (NCKU). Deputy Minister Yu-Chin Hsu of the Ministry of Science and Technology (MOST) President Wang Yeong-Her of the National Applied Research Laboratories (NARLabs) Deputy Director Raymond Greene of the American Institute in Taiwan (AIT) Deputy Director Mark Cheng of the Central Weather Bureau (CWB) Director General Chun-Liang Lin of the National Space Organization (NSPO) FORMOSAT-7 Program Director Vicky Chu of the National Space Organization (NSPO) Radio Occultation (RO) Technology Schematic Diagram Six satellites of FORMOSAT-7/COSMIC-2 mission provide about 4,000 radio occultation profiles daily between +/- 50 degrees of the north and south latitudes