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The Center for Satellite Applications and Research (STAR) is the science arm of the NOAA Satellite and Information Service (NESDIS), which acquires and manages the nation's operational Earth-observing satellites. STAR's mission is to accelerate the transfer of satellite observations of land, atmosphere, ocean, and climate from scientific research and development into routine operations, enabling NOAA to offer state-of-the-art data, products, and services to decision-makers.

STAR scientists find link between smoke from fires and tornado intensity STAR scientists Nick Nalli  and Jonathan Smith (NRC) investigate CoralReefWatch STAR 2014 Dept. of Commerce Gold and Silver Medal Honorees STAR 2015 Distinguished Career Award Winners Eric Bayler Honored with Bronze Medal Mike Pavolonis Receives NOAA’s David S. Johnson Award

February 5, 2015 - A new study accepted for publication in Geophysical Research Letters examines the role of atmospheric smoke in a historic severe weather outbreak on April 27, 2011. This extraordinary weather event produced 122 tornadoes and resulted in 313 deaths across the Southeastern U.S. and is considered the most severe event of its kind since 1950. The authors of this study include Brad Pierce and Andy Heidinger of CoRP / ASPB. Read more.

January 28, 2015 - The NOAA ship Ronald H. Brown set sail on January 15 as part of CalWater 2015, a two-month research study to investigate how West Coast rain and snow are impacted by atmospheric rivers and aerosols. The research crew includes STAR's Nick Nalli and NRC visiting scientists Jonathan Smith, who are launching dedicated radiosondes to observe atmospheric rivers and to collect data for validating JPSS environmental data records. CalWater 2015 has research teams working in air, on the ocean, and on land to improve our understanding of 'atmospheric rivers' of rain-bearing clouds that bring floods and extreme weather to the Pacific coast every winter. This year's CalRiver project activities was recently featured in the Washington Post. Read more.

CoralReefWatch's Mark Eakin Interviewed on Coral Bleaching By Scientific American

January 26, 2015 - NOAA Coral Reef Watch’s Mark Eakin was interviewed by Scientific American for a piece entitled, “Coral Reefs Show Remarkable Ability to Recover from Near Death”. The article discussed a new study by Nicholas Graham (James Cook University) and others published this week in Nature, revealing that some corals can bounce back from near death experiences, such as the severe bleaching events recently in the south Pacific and Florida in 2014. Dr. Eakin was also asked to discuss the current thermal stress outlook for coral reef ecosystems across the world's oceans. Read more.

STAR's Ocean Surface Winds Team Begins Winter Storms Flight Experiment over the North Atlantic

January 20, 2015 - Personnel from STAR and NOAA’s Aircraft Operations Center deployed last week on NOAA's Kermit (P-3) aircraft to Halifax, Nova Scotia. Experimental flights will be conducted over the North Atlantic and Labrador Sea. NOAA's plane carries advanced remote-sensing equipment including the Imaging Wind and Rain Profiler developed and built by the Microwave Remote Sensing Laboratory at U-Mass Amherst. The team's work will be focused on testing this new instrument, validating output from existing instruments such as ASCAT and RapidSCAT, and evaluating new remote-sensing techniques and instrumentation. Read more.

December 18, 2014 - Today Dr. Kathryn D. Sullivan announced this year's Gold and Silver Medal award winners. These medals, which are the highest awards bestowed by the Dept. of Commerce, recognize distinguished performance by NOAA employees. The honorees included 4 STAR scientists: Bill Pichel and Pablo Clemente-Colon were recognized for their research in synthetic aperture radar products. Tim Schmit (CoRP / ASPB) was recognized for critical support extending the useful life of aging weather satellites. And Sasha Ignatov (SOCD/SOSB) was honored with a Silver Medal for scientific excellence and leadership in developing NOAA’s web-based sea surface temperature monitoring system. Read more.

STAR 2015 Distinguished Career Award Winners

December 9, 2014 - NOAA's Distinguished Career Award honors cumulative career achievement of sustained excellence, rather than a single defined accomplishment. Three outstanding STAR scientists were honored this year. Felix Kogan, Bill Pichel, and Kent Hughes have together served NOAA for over 100 years, excelling in remote sensing of the oceans and monitoring global surface land conditions. Read more.

Eric Bayler Honored with Bronze Medal

December 9, 2014 - Eric Bayler was honored with a DOC Bronze Medal as a member of a NOAA-wide team that produced NOAA's first 5-year research and development plan, using a rigorous process and inclusive engagement of NOAA scientists and stakeholders. Read more.

Mike Pavolonis Receives NOAA’s David S. Johnson Award

November 17, 2014 - CoRP's Mike Pavolonis has won the NOAA-Johnson Award. Mike is being honored for developing cutting-edge methods to convert satellite data into actionable information for mitigating hazards caused by volcanic eruptions and severe convection. These new remote sensing techniques improve the timeliness and accuracy of volcanic ash cloud advisories and severe weather warnings. The NOAA-Johnson Award, named after the 1st NOAA assistant administrator for the Satellites and Information Service, recognizes professional scientists who create new uses for observational satellite data, which can better predict atmospheric, oceanic and terrestrial conditions. Read more.

14th Annual NOAA-CREST Day

photo: Dr. Stephen VolzKeynote Speaker:
Dr. Stephen Volz,
NOAA Assistant Administrator for Satellite
& Information Services

April 14, 2015, 10:00 a.m. - 2:00 p.m.
Grove School of Engineering, Steinman Hall Auditorium
The City College of City University of New York
140th St. and Convent Avenue, New York, NY

  • Interact & network with NOAA-CREST students and faculty
  • Learn about NOAA and NOAA-CREST sciences
  • Exciting career and paid internship opportunities
  • Enjoy door prizes, lunch and fun-filled activities


NOAA-CREST and NESDIS/STAR Joint Technical and Advisory Board Meeting - May 7, 2015

NESDIS 2014 Annual Report

October 16, 2014 - NESDIS released their 2014 annual report today, prominently featuring STAR's awards, publications, and achievements. Read it here.


American Meteorological Society
2014 Awards

CIMSS Logo October 15, 2014 - Today the American Meteorological Society recognized the UW-Madison CIMSS Tropical Cyclone Group and STAR's Bob Kuligowski, as they announced recipients of their 2015 award winners, (PDF, 248 KB).

UW-Madison CIMSS Tropical Cyclone Group
The group: Christopher Velden, Timothy Olander, Derrick Herndon, Anthony Wimmers, David Stettner, Steven Wanzong, Sarah Griffin, John Sears, and Jason Dunion were honored "For providing the weather community with valuable tropical cyclone-related satellite information and derived products for over two decades." CIMSS is an Institute of STAR's Cooperative Research Program (CoRP) and is colocated with STAR's Advanced Satellite Products Branch.

Bob Kuligowski
Recognized by the Bulletin of the American Meteorological Society with the 2015 Editor's Award "For providing comprehensive, timely reviews that provided valuable stylistic and technical insights with unusual precision and thoughtfulness."

STAR congratulates them all for their efforts.

Latest STAR Publications

Updated: Thu, 12 Feb 2015

Operationalizing resilience for adaptive coral reef management under global environmental change
Anthony KRN, Marshall PA, Abdulla A, Beeden R, Bergh C, Black R, Eakin CM, Game ET, Gooch M, et al.
Global Change Biology 21(1):48-61.
DOI: 10.1111/gcb.12700
Jan 2015
Probabilistic radar rainfall nowcasts using empirical and theoretical uncertainty models
Dai Q, Rico-Ramirez MA, Han D, Islam T and Liguori S
Hydrological Processes 29(1):66-79.
DOI: 10.1002/hyp.10133
Jan 2015
The first Sentinel-1 SAR image of a typhoon
Li X
Acta Oceanologica Sinica 34(1):1-2.
DOI: 10.1007/s13131-015-0589-8
Jan 2015
WRF-Chem model estimates of equatorial Atlantic Ocean tropospheric ozone increases via June 2006 African biomass burning ozone precursor transport
Smith JW, Jenkins GS and Pickering KE
Journal of Atmospheric Chemistry 71(3):225-251.
DOI: 10.1007/s10874-014-9293-x
Sep 2014
Assessment of SMOS soil moisture retrieval parameters using tau-omega algorithms for soil moisture deficit estimation
Srivastava PK, Han D, Rico-Ramirez MA, O'Neill P, Islam T and Gupta M
Journal of Hydrology 519:574-587.
DOI: 10.1016/j.jhydrol.2014.07.056
Nov 27 2014
On-orbit characterization of the VIIRS solar diffuser and solar diffuser screen
Sun JQ and Wang MH
Applied Optics 54(2):236-252.
DOI: 10.1364/ao.54.000236
Jan 2015
The impact of AIRS atmospheric temperature and moisture profiles on hurricane forecasts: Ike (2008) and Irene (2011)
Zheng J, Li J, Schmit TJ, Li J and Liu Z
Advances in Atmospheric Sciences 32(3):319-335.
DOI: 10.1007/s00376-014-3162-z
Mar 2015
Recalibration and merging of SSU observations for stratospheric temperature trend studies
Zou C-Z, Qian H, Wang W, Wang L and Long C
Journal of Geophysical Research-Atmospheres 119(23):13180-13205.
DOI: 10.1002/2014jd021603
Dec 16 2014

View all of STAR's latest research articles.


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